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Rivera confirms Panthers’ interest in Mikell

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Panthers coach Ron Rivera acknowledged that his team might still be trying to fix one of the weakest spots on the roster.

Rivera confirmed last week’s report that the Panthers were talking to veteran safety Quintin Mikell.

“Without getting into details, I think there’s a little curiosity and that’s about as much as I can say about that,” Rivera told Joe Person of the Charlotte Observer. “He can play. He’s a good football player. We’ll see how things go. It’s still early. We’ve got a couple weeks left to go.”

The 32-year-old Mikell would be the favorite for a starting job if he signed with the Panthers, since they don’t have much opposite free safety Charles Godfrey.

Mikell was released by the Rams in March, but has shown plenty of evidence that he’s still capable of helping a team. Especially a team as thin at his position as the Panthers.

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9 Responses to “Rivera confirms Panthers’ interest in Mikell”
  1. bigblu73 says: Jul 11, 2013 6:36 PM

    After watching Nakumara play in the secondary for the Panthers last season, Mikell has to be a vast improvement!!!!LOL Pretty surprised that the Panthers didn’t make a stronger effort to get that secondary a serious upgrade.

  2. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: Jul 11, 2013 7:11 PM

    The Panthers new GM failed to pick up a safety in the draft which is unthinkable when you consider safety play last year for the Panthers. Now a panic.

    But they have plenty of RBs and DTs…..go figure

  3. tennesseeoilers says: Jul 11, 2013 7:39 PM

    I wonder why the Panthers haven’t brought free agent strong safety Corey Lynch in for a workout. In addition to being a local favorite (Appalachian State standout), he was a pleasant surprise to the San Diego Chargers as their starter the second half of last season. The Chiefs recently brought him in for a workout, and though I’m a Titans fan, I’d like to see him play where he already has a fanbase.

  4. joeyrio says: Jul 11, 2013 8:13 PM

    The Panthers do have a gaping hole in their secondary. And they are still unproven at the corners as well. I know they hoped to improve their defensive backfield by improving their defensive front, specifically the defensive tackle position.

    Their thought was upgrading the pass rush would by default improve the secondary. If the defense can get to the qb sooner than the secondary won’t be tasked with covering receivers as long. Now there is a certain degree of logic to that line of thinking but I do wish the Panthers had drafted a safety.

    The play ( I use that term in the loosest sense of the word) of Nakamura mandates we make a move for a safety. I am 40 years old and could have gone out and played as well (again used in the loosest sense of the word).

    Mikell would be a significant upgrade over Yuckamura. I am hoping this deal works out for Carolina as I am obviously a Panther fan. That would sure up the teams biggest weakness.

  5. Distinguished Male says: Jul 11, 2013 8:56 PM

    Laugh at the guy who says they have plenty of DTs. Last year this time, they had just one solid Dt who was coming off a torn tricep, and who is on the wrong side of 30. Guess who got them “plenty of DTs”? That same gm you are blasting. Let’s let his FIRST draft class play out, at least a bit, before we crap on him, yeah? Sides, they have one of the best defensive fronts in football now. Getting to the QB and forcing 3rd and longs can really help mask a poor secondary.

    That being said, HOW HAVE THEY NOT SIGNED MIKELL YET? Make it happen already. Instant upgrade while the younger guys figure it out.

  6. teek77 says: Jul 11, 2013 10:34 PM

    I agree with an effort to sign either Mikell or Lynch. Both would be an improvement over what they currently have. Right now they are still vulnerable to the 4th quarter deep passes that lost so many games over the past few years.

  7. drunkencat1 says: Jul 12, 2013 9:54 AM

    I don’t believe Carolina’s secondary is as bad as everyone makes it out to be. The played pretty good in the second half of the season. You could blame some of their gaffs on coaching and soft zones in crunch time.

    Like Joeyrio said, the upgrade on the defensive front should improve the secondary by itself and although there were no ground breaking moves in the offseason, they did some things to help out which is good considering the cap situation we had going into free agency.

  8. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: Jul 12, 2013 3:03 PM

    @distinguished male
    Laugh at the guy who says they have plenty of DTs. Last year this time, they had just one solid Dt who was coming off a torn tricep, and who is on the wrong side of 30. Guess who got them “plenty of DTs”? ….

    My point was the Panthers used their first two draft picks on DTs while as you point out, they really only needed one. It would have made sense to draft a safety with one of those first two picks.

    That’s now obvious with them looking at Mikell.

    And no, a defensive line doesn’t mask a bad secondary in the NFL. That’s been tried before.

  9. ahrcshaw says: Jul 12, 2013 8:16 PM

    Money is the hold up. Mikell a free agemt becasue his anual salary is 9 million and there is no way the Panthers are going to pay this for one year. They are probalbl y barganing pay and if it gets in the range MR G wants then Mikell will be a Panther, if not the Panthers have a prettey good group of young guys viaing for the position. I would think at this point the Panthers would choose to Work with their young group because that is the future.

    As a side point I’d like the mention the 2004 Panther team that went to the Super Bowl, they had a bunch of rookies, a decent OL, a good 2nd yr QB, a decent running back, a good DL and a good set of LB’s, they had a bad group of Corners and a good SS and FS but no debth. If you look at the talent of the 2004 team to the talent of the 2013 team the 2013 team is a little more talented. The diference in the two teams will be what the 2013 team does this year. The 2004 team went from obscuity to (should have won the SB) they made the wild card and played every game away from home and were major underdogs in all of them. Go Panthers.

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