Kris Jenkins would have made a big difference in last night's game.
I agreed with the management decision to let him go, and still do. But with that said, a presence like his on the interior line, a guy on the inside who could both stop the run and effectively rush the passer, would have been huge last night.
We have on the interior right now is a guy who can stop the run (Kemo) and a guy who can rush the passer (Lewis) but not one guy who can do both. Truthfully, those guys don't grow on trees. Much as I like Lewis, I've long felt he was a better rotational guy than starter, but he's being paid as a starter now. Doubt that changes.
Could the team find another guy like that in the offseason. Possibly, but again those guys are fairly rare. We've got no first round pick and a couple of high priority free agents, so I don't know how much money we'll have for "shopping" this offseason, and guys like that don't come cheap in free agency or trade.
(can't say I've looked at the free agent list; might not even by anyone who fits the bill on it)
Bottom Line: I'm sure the Panthers locker room has been better overall this season without the headaches Jenkins caused, and no one can definitively say that we'd have had an equal or better season with him in the fold, but yeah, it would have been nice to have him last night.
Biggest lesson out of all of this though: Folks who are pining for what Kris Jenkins brought to the field should be the last ones calling for the team to show Julius Peppers the door :nonod:
Edited by Mr Scot, 22 December 2008 - 12:45 PM.
added in the missing point