Monday, July 23, 2012

Good riddance on Otah

The Carolina Panthers made a wise move today when they shipped offensive tackle Jeff Otah to the New York Jets for an undisclosed conditional draft choice.

Otah is gone? Good riddance. There are some players who look great coming off the team bus and end up being nothing much. Otah was one of those. (The opposite is also true -- there are guys who you wouldn't look twice at coming off a team bus if you didn't know who they were and they end up being incredible. Steve Smith is one of those).

At 6-6 and 330 pounds (at least), Otah could block out the sun when he was in your midst. I'm 6-foot-2, and Otah is the guy I feel smallest next to in the Panther locker room.

But he absolutely could not stay healthy. In the past two seasons, Otah has missed 28 of a possible 32 games due to knee problems. That is not a guy I'm going to trust to come back and guard Cam Newton's right side (the way he prefers to scramble) if I'm the Panthers.

When Otah played -- and he started 29 of a possible 64 games for the Panthers all told in four seasons -- he was decent. He would occasionally steamroll somebody and was better as a run-blocker. But I never thought he was nearly as good overall as left tackle Jordan Gross (who, like Otah, was a first-round pick but has turned out a whole lot better). And his work ethic was questionable as he attempted injury rehab.

I'm not saying it's Otah's fault he got hurt. Big guys' knees sometimes simply break down (Kris Jenkins was another example, although he had some great years for the Panthers before that happened).

So best to cut bait with Otah. Because of the injury problems, he was one of the Panthers' few misfires in recent years with No.1 draft picks (Cam Newton, DeAngelo Williams, Jonathan Stewart and Jon Beason being some of the bull's-eyes).

As for the other trade the Panthers made Monday -- and weren't they busy! -- I can't honestly say I know a lot about WR Louis Murphy, who once was Newton's teammate at Florida (the Panthers gave up a late pick to get him). But adding some depth at wide receiver seems like an OK idea since it didn't cost much. Murphy has never had an enormous year, but has had a couple of nice ones. I think Brandon LaFell still ends up starting at the No.2 receiver alongside Smith, but if I were David Gettis or Armanti Edwards, I'd be a little worried right now.

Ultimately on Monday, the draft picks were pretty much a wash. The Panthers basically gave up Otah for Murphy and I'm fine with that deal.

16 comments:

Steel Six said...

I read that Gettis was getting the PUP treatment, so we have a spot on the roster for a WR. Good trades all the way around IMHO..

Mike said...

Why not do a little research on Louis Murphy before posting?

Shane Porter said...

I agree Scott, time to cut ties with Otah, he made a lot of money here in his 29 starts but couldn't stay on the field. The moves this coaching staff continue to make show that Marty and JR made not only the right choice but a phenomenal choice in hiring Rivera. I've spoken to him on several occasions and I must say, he's a pretty cool guy, very friendly and approachable as well. I hope he's our last coach for the next decade at least! GO PANTHERS!!!

Anonymous said...

Mike, what is their to research? Scott is among the 99% here that doesn't know alot about Murphy because their just isn't alot to the guy this early in his career.

jake said...

Looks like Bojangles stock just dipped 5 points on news of Otah's departure.

Anonymous said...

Re: "Good riddance on Otah", can't wait till I see "good riddance on Scott." There was no reason for that headline or kicking people on the way out. Otah was a good citizen and deserved better.

J said...

Even if Otah were cut outright, that would show great growth in Hurney because it indicates he finally has grasped the concept of sunk costs. But the fact that he got a halfway decent player for him is a great bonus.

I like Murphy better than Gettis. I do not understand all the love around here for Gettis. He had 2 terrific games for a 2-14 team. That's it. Even worse, John Fox liked him. Any offensive player that John Fox likes should be viewed with caution, since John Fox would be perfectly content with punting on second down so the defense could get on the field faster.

Murphy, on the other hand, at least had a decent season catching passes from Bruce Gradkowski. He should be much better catching passes from Cam.

manu4t said...

Gettis isnt progressing as well from the ACL tear - that is usually an 18 mo injury - so the Murphy move was a good one. We could still use a better, clear cut #2 and need to invest a high pick in a WR soon. Good riddance to Otah, he was a cap space suckhole who never lived up to the hype.

Anonymous said...

One thing shouldn't be lost in all this: Otah was yet another bust of a pick by overrated GM Marty Hurney.
And with the Murphy signing it should signal the end of Armanti Edwards, who should have been cut last year. Armanti will go down as the double whammy for Marty...his worst trade ever and worst pick ever.
These are things the Charlotte media will never point out because of the love affair with former beat writer Marty Hurney.

Greg said...

"Decent"?! You called Otah decent when he played? Scott, you really need to open your eyes and not let his injuries blind the fact that this guy was absolute terror on the right side for our run game. He was the reason DeAngelo ran for 18 TD's in 2008. He was a great run-blocking RT who was catching on to pass blocking quite well until he went down with knee injuries. There are certain guys, reasons unknown, who are more prone to injuries than others. Otah is one of them. He has great talent when healthy and is a solid starter on any team. Byron Bell will not start at RT for this team this year, he tries hard but the talent really isn't there. Lacks discipline, footwork is sloppy and he doesn't have the quickness to beat a DE to the edge. Please don't disrespect a player just because we traded him and he was injured, it's bad taste.

Buckshot Jenkins said...

J - 8:05 - I liked the comment about Fox wanting to punt on 2nd down to get the defense on the field faster!

Scott said...

Wish we could have gotten Jacoby Ford, one of the fastest NFL players, from the Raiders instead of this Murphy guy. We need a burner w/ Cam's rocket arm.

PJ said...

Another ridiculous post. Scott's logic, once again, is warped. Otah is in the last year of a relatively modest contract. He is finally healthy. At least keep him around as a back-up. If Carolina had a blue chip replacement this trade might make sense. Later on in the season when the Panthers are nicked up and scrambling to find a decent OL, Otah's value will be missed. And Scott can go ahead and eat crow with some good riddance sprinkled on top.

Anonymous said...

While I agree the Panthers made a good move in trading Otah, I agree with the previous post that says, the "good riddance" headline and comment was uncalled for by you. I hope when you leave that the newspaper writers will be kinder to you.

Charlottean said...

J,

the same thing you said about murphy is true about gettis. it was a 2-14 year where he was catching balls from jimmy clausen. He TOO would benefit from playing with Cam. The love for gettis is warranted, he's a raw speedster (or was rather) who made some really nice plays as a late drafted, low cost rookie. Anytime you get talent late in the draft, it's always a good thing.

Assuming gettis comes back to anything close to full speed (next year, I assume) he has the potential to be a long time NFL starter.

Anonymous said...

The "Good riddance on Otah" title was harsh and unnecessary.