Carolina Panthers: Rakim Cox pushes through
“All they needed to do was get in field goal range. Before we went out, our D-line coach told us that it was on us to make something happen.”
Those are the words spoken by the defensive end for the Carolina Panthers named Rakim Cox. Cox was referring to what happened Friday night right before him and the rest of the defense for the Panthers took the field for the Buffalo Bills final possession with just under a minute to go in the game and the Panthers leading 25-24.
Yes, it was a preseason game, but Cox knew this could be his chance to shine and leave his impression on the coaches. This was his chance to possibly make the Carolina Panthers.
Jul 26, 2014; Spartanburg, SC, USA; Helmets all lines up during training camp at Gibbs Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
What did Cox do? He disrupted each of the final four plays the Bills ran, which placed the stamp on the victory.
So now you ask, what is so special about Cox and him making an impact in at the end of the game Friday night?
Well, that is easy. Cox has faced an uphill battle to get where he is and struggled along the way, but has not given up and continued to push forward, not letting anything stand in his way.
The uphill battle started at the NFL Draft in 2014, as Cox was not drafted coming out of Villanova. However, he was picked up by the Minnesota Vikings, but released in training camp. The Miami Dolphins then picked him up, but he lasted only eight days before he was cut.
It is hard to say why he was not cut both times, because it is evident Cox has skills and can play. For his career at Villanova, Cox started 47 games, while compiling 105 tackles, 33.5 tackles for loss, 18 sacks, 14 passes defended, 2 interceptions, 4 forced fumbles and 1 fumble recovery.
Next: How Cox landed with the Panthers