No Loss to Endure by the Carolina Panthers Today

Businessman Dick Smith poses with a suitcase containing the A$1 million ($909,000) first prize in the Wilberforce Award during a publicity event in Sydney August 11, 2010. The Wilberforce Award, being offered by Smith, will go to a person under the age of 30 who can, in the words of organizers, show leadership in communicating an alternative to our population and consumption growth-obsessed economy. REUTERS/Daniel Munoz (AUSTRALIA - Tags: SOCIETY)

It’s a sorry state of affairs in Carolina this season. Fans knew there was the likely potential for another 8-8 or losing season; perhaps the ever unlikey potential for a 9-7 or stretch of 10-6 season, but at this stage of the season, three wins seems a push. The good — for what it’s worth — is that today there will be no football played by the Carolina Panthers. Today’s a “Bye.” A day in which we can focus on other areas that may have perhaps desired our attention for the past five or so weeks.

Before I get to the meat of what I want to post, I do have a couple of questions; one is in reference to a statement that’s been made for the past couple of weeks. I’ve supplied my thoughts on it, which derives from what I thought was fact, but yet still goes unanswered: “The Carolina Panthers are involved with talks of trading Steve Smith.”

How? Isn’t it true that a team cannot trade a player who is presently injured? Beyond that, what team is allegedly talking to Carolina’s front office about trading for an injured player? My understanding of this a year ago, was that an injured player can not be traded or released until he is healthy. That second part being a team can’t release him citing his injury as the reason.

Next is the product the Panthers have put on the field for the 2010 season. It’s a shoddy one. To no fault of the players who have been brought in to attempt to save what some might deem a sinking ship. Everyone has shared the blame to some extent lesser or greater. Owner Jerry Richardson continues to feel the brunt of the fans’ wrath, while John Fox and Marty Hurney are in some sort of limbo, holding placards stating “our hands are tied.”

Fair enough.

However it still doesn’t excuse the trading of next year’s Second-Round draft pick for a player who is not what we thought he would be. I still remember thinking how good of an idea it wasn’t when that trade and selection was made almost six months ago. Again, no fault of Armanti Edwards…I don’t dislike the guy. But I truly believe he was put in a bad situation and has, more-or-less, been set up to fail. Does it mean he can’t get a grasp of learning a new position? No. I think he can, but not with the current umm…”situation” in Carolina.

I wasn’t going to talk about it, but I changed my mind. I’m going to touch on the topic for just a moment. Up next for Carolina is a team that will either be winless or will have its first win, the San Francisco 49ers; dubbed the best winless team in the league, it looks even more like the Panthers could be staring down the barrel of 0-6 already.

The popular opinion is well, they’ve had two weeks to prepare for this one; we should see a big difference and have a greater chance at a win. In some situations, that may be so. However in this current situation, player had the majority of the Bye Week off, practiced for one or two days, and went to their respective homes for the weekend. Thus an ill-prepared team, set up to probably fail next week.

At what point does Fox lose control of this team? Has he already lost its interest? Late at night on a weeknight and shortly following losses, are the tweets of cheery players letting us know what they’re doing after the game or at midnight on a Tuesday night there’s a player telling us about who he’s playing against in NBA2K11.

Yes, these guys have a life outside of football, and I don’t have a problem with that at all. But it makes me wonder how much interest John Fox has lost from his team. Which in turn, makes me wonder how disinterested in coaching this team John Fox really is?

The season is still young, but from here, the highway of 10 games remaining stretches on infinitely.

Follow Cat Crave on Twitter @THECatCrave.

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Tags: 0-5 0-6 Armanti Edwards Bye Week Carolina Panthers Jerry Richardson John Fox Marty Hurney NFL

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