The Carolina Panthers fullback seems left out of the picture….
It may seem like the fullback is becoming an obsolete position. For the Carolina Panthers, that line of thinking may be in fact true. Some teams prefer to use just the running backs, while other teams employ the fullback for certain situations.
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The Panthers fall into the former category, as they have a bunch of running backs at their disposal. With a backfield that includes the likes of Christian McCaffrey and C.J. Anderson, there are very few instances where a fullback is actually needed. That is not to say they do not use one. However, when you have that type of talent in the backfield, why would you make the fullback a huge part of your offense?
Unfortunately for Alex Armah, this does not mean good things for him. Drafted in the sixth round No. 192 overall in 2017, the West Georgia product only had nine total touches while he was there. Last year in his rookie campaign for the Carolina Panthers, he had none. Heading into this season, there was speculation that he could see a bigger role in Norv Turner’s offense. This would certainly be a great thing for Armah.
Bill Voth touched upon this in his weekly Grill Bill segment on Friday. He indicated that although Armah may get more playing time under the direction of Turner, he still may not get to see the field that often.
"I may have contributed to your excitement (of him playing more) when I talked him up on a recent “Press Coverage” podcast, but let’s pump the brakes a bit.I think Armah will make the roster and could get more touches than he did as a rookie – when he had none. But let’s remember he’s playing a marginalized position, and he’s two years removed from totaling nine touches at Division II West Georgia."
To me, the outlook does not look good for Armah here. If anything, Armah is in a good situation personally, where he is playing for a winning organization that may give him some occasional touches. It does not sound like he is going to have the opportunity to light the world on fire by any stretch of the imagination. Even still, he has the opportunity to at least make the playoffs and maybe even earn himself a Super Bowl ring.
In my personal opinion, the fullback position is becoming marginalized as a whole in the National Football League. I do not think the Carolina Panthers are alone in this situation. The one team that I can remember using the fullback exclusively is the Green Bay Packers and John Kuhn as fans would rain down the cheers of “Kuhnnnnn” at Lambeau Field. The fact that he was not used that often is what made him so special and his toughness endeared him to the Green Bay fans.
Alex Armah may be in a pickle. With too much talent in the backfield on a whole, there just does not seem to be enough room for him. That and the fact that fullbacks are becoming archaic does not help either. We will have to see what he can do under Norv Turner. For his sake, I hope he can find his niche within the Carolina Panthers offense and have a great year.