I'm so tired of hearing about mediated labor talks, player-owner disputes and the expiration (or extension) of the current CBA.
Maybe that's partly why I'm so in favor of the Carolina Panthers' signing of Jeremy Shockey, announced today. It means we can talk about football again -- thinking about what third-and-7 looks like instead of what a seven-hour negotiating session must sound like.
I know there are risks involved with Shockey. He's been injury-prone recently. He's blunt. He's a character. And he's 30 years old, which is nearing old age at the tight end position.
But there are also rewards. The last "senior" tight end the Panthers signed following his stint in New Orleans, Wesley Walls, was the best at the position the team has ever had.
New coach Ron Rivera has spoken about finding one guy at TE to be Carolina's threat, rather than the 3-headed monster of mediocrity that played the position last season. This looks like Rivera and his staff doing something pro-active, trying to see how much tread Shockey has left on the tires. The guy has the Super Bowl ring the Panthers all want, he's a multiple Pro Bowler -- he's worth a shot.