I spent some time in the Panthers' locker room Wednesday and came away with this column on new Carolina starting RB Mike Goodson, who will be forced into the lineup Sunday at Tampa Bay due to the glut of injuries at that position.
I like Goodson -- he's fun to be around. Always seems happy. And he's confident, which is a rare thing in Carolina's locker room these days. Now whether he does much Sunday -- that's very iffy. But I'm glad he's getting a chance.
A few other mid-week thoughts about the Panthers:
-- It was striking when listening to Matt Moore and Thomas Davis talk about their season-ending injuries and 2011. Davis sounds very confident that he will end up here in 2011 and beyond, signed to a long-term deal and perhaps a Panther for life. he and GM Marty Hurney have talked about it.
-- Moore, on the other hand, has had no such conversations with Carolina. And it seems far less likely to me that he will end up back here (like Davis, he will be an unrestricted free agent in 2011 -- pending, of course, all the stuff with the lockout).
-- Jimmy Clausen seems a little beaten down to me by his lack of success in the first half of the season. The guy who proclaimed on Draft Day in April that the Panthers had just made the best pick of the draft -- I don't know where that guy went, but he's not inhabiting Clausen's body anymore. This guy really needs something good to happen, but starting on the road against surprising Tampa Bay this week and against a fearsome Baltimore defense next week doesn't seem the ticket.
-- Armanti Edwards as the emergency QB? That may sound good to Appalachian State fans who want Armanti to play, but in reality it doesn't mean much other than Armanti is going to run the scout team in practice. As the third-string QB, Edwards will only play if both fellow rookies Clausen and Tony Pike get hurt. Which, given this offense and all its problems, certainly could happen, but more than likely won't. I'd rather see Edwards active so he could run a few plays from the Mountaineer formation at least, but that doesn't sound likely this week. That's too bad.