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Panthers receivers blocking out the criticism

kelvinbenjamin AP

Every wide receiver who caught a pass for the Panthers last year is gone this year, and the replacements aren’t exactly a group of superstars. In fact, the Panthers are viewed by many as having the worst group of wide receivers in the NFL.

But the Panthers’ new receivers say they’re blocking out that criticism and eager to show what kind of group they are. Panthers receiver Tiquan Underwood says he and his fellow receivers are focused on their jobs, not what anyone on the outside is saying about them.

“We’re going to do what we did in OTAs and minicamp: just come in each day and go to work. That’s it,” Underwood told USA Today. “Don’t worry about what the media is saying. Don’t worry about what even your own family is saying. You’ve got to block it out. Just go to work.”

Underwood said he thinks he and fellow receivers Jerricho Cotchery, Jason Avant and Kelvin Benjamin can get on the same page with quarterback Cam Newton before the season starts.

“We have no choice,” Underwood said. “This is what we get paid to do, so we’ve got to make it happen.”

The Panthers’ receivers and quarterbacks are getting together next week in Charlotte to do some pre-training camp work. Panthers fans have to hope that goes well. The Panthers’ receivers have a lot of work to do.

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46 Responses to “Panthers receivers blocking out the criticism”
  1. ak18346 says: Jul 11, 2014 6:32 AM

    I believe that they will end up in the top 3rd of the league as a group. They are not household name and in the news for getting in trouble like some. I am happy to have them here in Charlotte and getting ready for a solid season.

  2. jtm12180 says: Jul 11, 2014 6:34 AM

    As a Steelers fan, Jerrico Cotchery is one of the most under-rated WR’s in the league!

  3. dabears2485 says: Jul 11, 2014 6:39 AM

    They should invest in ear plug companies before they buy them in mass to black out the boos.

  4. diehardpanther says: Jul 11, 2014 6:47 AM

    Cam’s first year in the league was the lock out year. No history with any of his receivers. Not even a training camp. As I recall he had a pretty decent season.

  5. eaglesnoles05 says: Jul 11, 2014 6:49 AM

    I mean… They have two solid RB’s and a solid TE and a borderline superstar QB…

    A (still growing) physical young rookie WR who is a potential beast, a great possession guy in Avant, and then all the other guys are pro football players also… I’m not a Carolina fan, but with good play-calling I think they’ll be more than fine…

  6. drs12522 says: Jul 11, 2014 6:49 AM

    Carolina’s top 3 WRs in 2013 averaged just under 50 catches for 643 yds and 4.5 TDs. Steve Smith has already said he would not have worked as hard to get his knee in shape if he had not been traded. I wish the media would stop pretending the output of the Panthers top 2013 WRs was equal to that of the DEN Broncos WRs. It was an underwhelming bunch and the replacements will be disappointing only if they merely equal the mediocre production of the 2013 group.

  7. pencilmonkeymagic says: Jul 11, 2014 6:50 AM

    Intrigued to see how this group fares this season. A lot of potential there.

  8. fabquarrymen says: Jul 11, 2014 6:50 AM

    Everyone will be surprised at how quickly Cam will connect and bond with his receivers. All this talk is a waste of time. Everything will work out great and the Panthers will do well again this year.

  9. Eli Pacheco says: Jul 11, 2014 7:07 AM

    I will not worry about the Panthers’ receiving corps until I read this transaction:

    CAROLINA PANTHERS: Sign WR Dwayne Jarrett.

  10. hawkstradamus says: Jul 11, 2014 7:14 AM

    A great QB can make halfway decent WRs look totally decent. And with a strong running game and defense, and that’s enough.

  11. tennesseeoilers says: Jul 11, 2014 7:15 AM

    You know how this is going to play out … Cam is going to have his best season as a passer, and his critics are going to credit it to his “strong receiving corp.”

    - Titans Fan

  12. PeterKingLovesCoqAVin says: Jul 11, 2014 7:18 AM

    Difficult to feel like your team cares when they trot out that group with a straight face.

  13. micknangold says: Jul 11, 2014 7:25 AM

    Not fair to call them the worst. Benjamin has elite size and hasn’t even played yet. Cotchery and Avant are proven, savvy vets. The rest of the group are question marks. Not enough info to declare them the worst at this point.

  14. beckzhere says: Jul 11, 2014 7:30 AM

    I think Cam will get frustrated with his receivers lack of chemistry early in the season and will rely heavily on his feet. This will ultimately make or break their season, as he is going to be taking a lot of unnecessary hits while running.

  15. phluffyclouds says: Jul 11, 2014 7:37 AM

    It’s going to be funny when this year’s WR group puts up much better numbers than last year’s…

    Keep Pounding!!!

  16. joetoronto says: Jul 11, 2014 7:42 AM

    Who cares, their “QB” can’t pass the ball anyway, they need to block, not catch.

  17. brownsmakemecrazy says: Jul 11, 2014 7:50 AM

    Kelvin Benjamin was a great draft pick. He is a beast with size and speed

  18. 4grammarpolice says: Jul 11, 2014 7:59 AM

    At least we can all agree that Cliff Branch was better than Lynn Swann.

  19. btellington says: Jul 11, 2014 8:24 AM

    How many games did their receivers win for them last year? Did that group strike fear into any opposing team?

    This group isn’t anything special either, but the Panthers don’t need them to be to move the ball.

  20. dickshotdogs says: Jul 11, 2014 8:51 AM

    Fourth in The NFC South.

  21. officialgame says: Jul 11, 2014 8:54 AM

    The reality is they are below average, lack speed, and run after the catch ability. They strike fear into no one and is are weakest group on the team.

  22. baddegg says: Jul 11, 2014 8:59 AM

    I get the sneaky feeling that this group is really going to surprise people. In some ways, this is a great position to be in — very underrated, underappreciated, etc. — anything you do will be unexpected. It’s a good set up for success…

  23. coloradofort says: Jul 11, 2014 9:02 AM

    The Panthers have Receivers?

  24. pilot2011 says: Jul 11, 2014 9:07 AM

    They’ll be fine

  25. 4thandlonger says: Jul 11, 2014 9:11 AM

    Hopefully young Tiquan ‘Frank’ Underwood can make some plays in the Carolinas.

    I’d be just as worried about their new guys on the O-Line to help Newton as the WR’s.

    Still can’t work out exactly who is getting paid so much with the salary cap pressure the Panthers have. Inexcusable that the have talented guys on rookie deals and a drain of talent in some positions like WR but are cap squeezed.

  26. Getoffmylawn! says: Jul 11, 2014 9:41 AM

    I wish the Lions would follow their lead and shut up! Let your play surprise everyone instead of proclaiming that your team has Championship DNA and ends up 8-8.

  27. txn1836 says: Jul 11, 2014 9:44 AM

    I really dont think they are that bad, they have a blazer in umderwood, a genetic freak im benjamin, and one of the better route running wrs in the game in cotchery. They are going to shock some people

  28. pilot2011 says: Jul 11, 2014 9:52 AM

    I think people still forget Greg Olsen led the team in receptions last year and probably will again this year.

    A better option would be: Run the ball!

    You have Williams/Stewart/and Newton along with the best “Fullback” (really just a bowling ball of a running back) in the NFL, Mr. Tolbert.

    Once again, Carolina will be fine this year.

  29. keeppounding says: Jul 11, 2014 10:21 AM

    We were 29th in passing last season. Doesn’t get much worse. So we grabbed some possession guys and a huge kid with potential. 6-10, 7-9, 12-4. I think everyone should relax it’s going to be fine. If we get to 28th in passing this year it’s an improvement.

  30. peepeetoucher says: Jul 11, 2014 10:29 AM

    I may be in the minority but I think Benjamin is going to be a good player in the NFL. I know he’s raw but give him a year or two to understand the game and intricacies of the WR position and I think he’ll be fine. Cotchery is one of the most underated players in the NFL and has been his whole career.

  31. notthetroll says: Jul 11, 2014 10:39 AM

    I am kind of eager to see how Cam does with these ‘worst group of wide receivers in the NFL’.
    Does he elevate their play like maybe Brady does? Does he crash down to earth because of their shortcomings?
    My money is on something in-between siding on elevating their play to a good extent.
    Good luck Cam, and another interesting story to follow this year.

  32. richppldontwritechecks says: Jul 11, 2014 10:46 AM

    This just allows Cam, if things dont go well, to put the blame on someone else.

    the smart move would be to make a move for andre johnson, restructure his contract and groom some of these younger guys

    SKOL!

  33. junkmtb says: Jul 11, 2014 11:09 AM

    eaglesnoles05 thank you!!!! Something the article FAILED to point out!!!

  34. txn1836 says: Jul 11, 2014 11:35 AM

    Rich there is no way carolina in their salary cap bind could make room for Andre Johnson. Only way would be to include a high end player to make cap room for Johnson. If you guys throw in one of your wrecking ball defensive ends making 7-8 million as a texans fan im gonna be stoked to watch our defense this year.

  35. lacarious says: Jul 11, 2014 11:54 AM

    wiht how they did steve smith… i’m rooting for this team to fall on its face.

  36. qdog112 says: Jul 11, 2014 12:02 PM

    Tiquan Underwood may end up being the best WR for the Panthers this year. He’s got good size and speed and more motivation than anyone to prove everyone wrong.

    Outside of rookie Philly Brown, he’s the only one who has proved he can go long without a sundial. There are some unknowns, so people are right to be skeptical about the WR corps.

    Look for more TE involvement by Olsen and Dickson. Everything else is wishful thinking.

  37. politicallyincorrect says: Jul 11, 2014 12:17 PM

    Caaam

    LOL

    Panthers have as much of a QB issue/limitation as they do at WR

  38. tennesseeoilers says: Jul 11, 2014 1:21 PM

    politicallyincorrect says: “Panthers have as much of a QB issue/limitation as they do at WR.”

    Just came out of a 3-year coma, did ya, Incorrect?

  39. jjackwagon says: Jul 11, 2014 1:22 PM

    Ask Brady about of unknowns at WR. He seems to do okay. Then again Newton is no Brady.

  40. politicallyincorrect says: Jul 11, 2014 2:06 PM

    Caam was ready to be benched by wk 4 last year.. then team made him a game manager and he appeared to do well……… what happens when he tries to do more?

    dude simply does not have talent or potential to be a top QB… his greatest and only real asset is size

  41. rjkilla says: Jul 11, 2014 2:33 PM

    the biggest issue in carolina is gonna be the Oline. which is almost as bad as their receivers. i love the panthers but i’ll be surprised if cam doesn’t finish the year on IR and they go 8-8 or worse

  42. True Talker says: Jul 11, 2014 2:42 PM

    @polticallyincorrect

    You should probably just drop the “politically” part from your name. Your comments would then make much more sense.

  43. bnwillard says: Jul 11, 2014 3:54 PM

    The only place I’ve read they’re viewed as the worst is here. Give it a rest. These guys will put up similar numbers as last year’s guys at the very least.

  44. psan07 says: Jul 12, 2014 9:11 PM

    Everybody seems to have forgotten what Ted Ginns numbers looked like before he came to Carolina or even Greg Olsens numbers before he came to Carolina catching passes from Cam. I’m not worried about Carolinas receiving corp, not one bit.

  45. politicallyincorrect says: Jul 13, 2014 6:52 PM

    the real bad thing for Carolina is when Hello Kitty tires of being game manager and tries to play QB

  46. jgedgar70 says: Jul 14, 2014 8:07 AM

    4thandlonger says:
    Jul 11, 2014 9:11 AM
    Still can’t work out exactly who is getting paid so much with the salary cap pressure the Panthers have. Inexcusable that the have talented guys on rookie deals and a drain of talent in some positions like WR but are cap squeezed.
    _____
    We’re in cap jail due to the moronic contracts Marty Hurney gave out his last few years as GM. DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart are both making darn near Adrian Peterson money. Charles Johnson was signed to a $12M a year contract after the lockout because Hurney was scared he was going to bolt for his hometown of Atlanta (the Falcons were going to offer about half what we gave him). And with Greg Hardy’s contract up, we franchised him this year, so he’s making $13 million. Several have since been restructured but we still need some breathing room from DeAngelo and Johnson, because we’re going to have to give massive contracts to Cam and Luke Kuechly soon.

    As for the WRs, we have guys a lot of people haven’t heard of, and everyone is using the tired, old “I’ve never heard of him, therefore he MUST suck” philosophy. But no one has heard of Cotchery because of all the speed demons he played with in Pittsburgh (Wallace, Sanders, Brown, etc.). No one has heard of Avant because he played with DeSean Jackson. No one has heard of Underwood because he was playing with Vincent Jackson. What does all that mean? We have a bunch of other teams’ #2 WRs, plus a draft pick with enormous potential. Last year we had Steve Smith and a bunch of other teams’ #3 WRs. I do not understand why all the writers on this site insist all the Panthers WRs are hot garbage.

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