Thursday, March 20, 2014

Do not do it, Jerricho

UPDATE: I already have more respect for Jerricho Cotchery, who said on his conference call with reporters Thursday afternoon of the No.89: "I definitely wouldn't even think about touching that number." This news makes the blog below -- posted about 5 hours before Cotchery said that -- somewhat obsolete, but feel free to continue if you like..... Scott

If I am Jerricho Cotchery, there is no way I wear No.89 with the Carolina Panthers.

That's the number Cotchery wore last year in Pittsburgh, when he caught 10 touchdown passes and showed enough that the Panthers have signed him for 2014 after their four top wideouts of 2013 all walked out the door.

But Cotchery, a former N.C. State star, has to be smart enough to know that wearing No.89 in Charlotte would be a bad idea. He will already be incessantly compared to Steve Smith, the Panthers' best player of all time and another 30-something receiver who the Panthers controversially released last week (Smith had more receiving yards in 2013 than Cotchery, for what that's worth, but fewer TDs).

To wear No.89 in Charlotte puts Cotchery (who has worn the number in 9 of 10 seasons, as Joe Person points out) in a no-win situation -- he will just be compared to Smith all the more, and it's very difficult to win in that game. All those fans with No.89 jerseys in their closets won't like it. It will get Cotchery off on the wrong foot.

Far better, in fact, for the Panthers' very smart equipment man, Jackie Miles, to "unofficially" retire No.89 for now -- much like he seemed to for years with the No.51 and Sam Mills (the jersey was eventually retired, but Miles had pretty much mothballed it already, it seemed to me). No one should wear No.89 in the 2014 training camp. Too many memories. Too fresh. The debate as to whether the number should be permanently retired can be saved for another day -- I would come down in favor of that.

Let Cotchery pick his own number, one that doesn't have the weight of history behind it (unless it is N.C. State history -- in that case, as Joe Person points out, he should take No.82). And if he tries to insist on wearing No.89 anyway, someone over at Bank of America Stadium needs to save him from that mistake.


Anonymous said...

Scott says he will remove entire sentences from your comments if he does not agree with what you are saying. So don't write what you think unless you think like Scott.

Scott Fowler said...

Actually that's untrue -- the only choice I have when moderating comments (and I do moderate my own) is to "post" or not to post. No editing allowed -- the site wouldn't allow it and I agree with that. A comment is a comment. The only ones I don't post generally are R-rated with anywhere from 1-100 curse words, because kids read this blog, too.

Mike in Wilmington said...

Scott I appreciate your blog here and don't understand the hate you get but that's the internet, I guess.

To even consider taking 89 would be ridiculous and instantly create tension within the team and fanbase.

I hope it's not even in question.

Anonymous said...

This is crazy Scott. The #89 is not yet retired. Therefore anyone who wants to wear it should wear it. Smith may have his jersey retired in the future and then we all can give the #89 a fond farewell. Move on Panthers fans and let the man wear #89 if he so chooses.

Anonymous said...

I agree with letting Jerricho weat #89 if he so chooses. Steve Smith is not here and is not coming back. Living emotionaly in the past doesn't benefit anything. Be adults people...move on.

Biggy said...

You have the right to walk up to a hornets nest and hit it with your fist. Having the right to do something doesn't always translate it to being a smart thing.

Anonymous said...

Jerricho has already stated that he will not be wearing #89, out of respect.

Gus said...

The 2 guys who think its okay are crazy. Your ex girlfriend is fair game after you break up but you probably would not want to see your best friend with her the next day.

lannie said...

He does not want to wear 89 because he wants to be recognized for himself and not someone else.

Smitty is saying the same with the Ravens.

Its number on a shirt that no one died while wearing it. Let it sit a year till these Steve Smith worshippers get over it and believe me once football season starts they will. I have no clue where these Smitty worshippers heads are at that they cannot perceive the truth and facts.

Anonymous said...

Just don't pick number 86, Jerricho, because the number 86 means...bad stuff. Anything but """86!!""". Thank You