Jon Wagner, Yahoo contributor and the beat writer for New York Sports Day has some pointed things to report about Nicks, and he does mention the Carolina Panthers as a landing spot:
Worse than that, Nicks seemed to mentally check out and often give minimal effort this season -- a curiously imprudent approach for a player in a contract year, who considered himself "one of the top receivers" in the NFL.
In the 2011 postseason, Nicks caught six passes for 115 yards and two touchdowns, including a game-breaking 72-yard score to help lead the Giants to a divisional round win over Atlanta.
The following week, Nicks scored two more touchdowns -- finding the end zone on a brilliant 66-yard catch-and-run, and a Hail Mary grab that ended the first half -- while racking up 165 yards on seven catches, to help New York shock top-seeded, 15-1 Green Bay on the road.
And in Super Bowl XLVI, Nicks was quarterback Eli Manning's favorite target, as his 10 catches for 109 yards helped Manning secure his second Super Bowl M.V.P. Award, while more importantly, helping the Giants upset New England in football's biggest game, for a second time in six seasons.
Nicks Rested on His Laurels
But rather than working to continue on a path toward greatness, Nicks' work ethic suffered. The talented receiver voluntarily missed organized team activities over the summer (which annoyed head coach Tom Coughlin), was repeatedly fined for being late to team meetings or missing injury treatments, and routinely ran routes or went after some passes thrown his way in games with only limited exertion and commitment.
Somewhat hampered by injuries over his career, Nicks' change in attitude might have been influenced by the increased attention and money thrown at Victor Cruz...
Where Nicks might play next season remains unclear, although the Charlotte native who starred at the University of North Carolina seems like a good fit for the Carolina Panthers, who could use a receiver like Nicks, if he can benefit from a change of scenery to become the player he once was for New York.
I can take Nicks or leave him. I followed him fairly closely this past season due to him being on my fantasy team, honestly (before I dropped him). Yes, Eli had an awful year---that's not to be denied---but Nicks hasn't been a WR1-like for several years now. And the more I hear, the more skeptical (or at least confused) that I become, especially when you factor in his injury history and whether or not that has damaged Nicks irrevocably. But...the thing is a lot of this article points to Nicks' attitude, and that can certainly change. If he would sign a one to three year contract that is commensurate with his production over the years---one that reflects his less than committed attitude and drop-off in production---as a test run that gives us a good sampling of why he is still one of the NFL's best, then I am all for it. When I look at his career in its totality, at this point I don't see WR1 numbers, but WR2 numbers---and effort, so to me that's where the both G-man, Nicks and his agent should be shooting for as it pertains to a contract. If he doesn't want to be fair, then let someone else take the risk. I have trust that G-man will get us right, with or without Nicks.