Panthers see Mike Tolbert as a fullback

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The Panthers set off a wave of speculation about the future of their backfield when they signed Mike Tolbert as a free agent earlier this month.

With DeAngelo Williams getting a big contract last year and Tolbert nabbing a four-year deal this year, plenty of people wondered if they were going to trade Jonathan Stewart. Stewart is going into the final year of his contract and it seems unclear that he has much of a future in Carolina beyond this year with all the other commitments at the position.

But it also sounds like it is unlikely that he’ll be playing anywhere but Carolina this season. Panthers coach Ron Rivera talked about Tolbert’s role with the Panthers this season and they aren’t viewing him as a threat to Stewart’s role.

“Everybody keeps saying he’s a tailback. But he’s a fullback to us. Because again, we saw how we had used him in San Diego. We just thought this is a guy we’d love to have. … If you can put an athletic, play-making fullback there, I think it helps you.”

How it will all shake out remains to be seen, but it’s a safe bet that Tolbert’s touches will go way down from what they were in San Diego. With Williams, Stewart and Cam Newton also on hand, it also seems like a safe bet that the Panthers will be one of the league’s better running teams in 2012.

14 responses to “Panthers see Mike Tolbert as a fullback

  1. They’ll now have 3 threats to run in the backfield anytime they line up with FB and RB, kind of scary. Also, that’s one more “check down” player for Newton in the passing game. We really need to reload our defense, but, adding Tolbert helps the offense a ton.

  2. He better play defense too because the kittens can’t stop anybody
    6-10 last year
    4-12 this year.
    enjoy the cellar

  3. @ Puddy

    Name three defensive tackles who started for the panthers in 2011 without using google.

    Oh you can’t? Wierd. Because by your comment, I figured you knew everything about the Panthers.

  4. thespeaker08 says:
    Apr 1, 2012 10:39 AM
    @ Puddy

    Name three defensive tackles who started for the panthers in 2011 without using google.

    Oh you can’t? Wierd. Because by your comment, I figured you knew everything about the Panthers.
    ————————————————–
    ————————————————–
    GOT EM COACH!

  5. Name three defensive tackles who started for the panthers in 2011 without using google.

    Fau, McClain. Shirley, Kearse and Neblett….
    Im a Panther fan by the way, but Beason, Davis, Edwards, and Hogan a shut down corner (that will take Captain’s spot, will be back healthy, we picked up Nakamura ( Martin’s) replacement, and we still have the draft.

  6. tolbert is a beast period. he can catch the ball and run hard after. he can pound, and he can block. an assett to any team, just bummed he didn’t show up on “my” team’s roster. panthers really beefed up there.

  7. The only one I want to see lose carries due to Tolbert’s arrival is Newton. I know he’s built like a linebacker, but I’d much rather he threw a checkdown to Tolbert and let Tolbert run over people than Newton packing it in and running. I would also rather see Tolbert get the ball on third and goal from the 3.

    If we can either get a good #2 WR in the draft or if one of the stiffs we have on the roster develop into a good #2 WR, we’ll have the best offense in the league.

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