19. Jerry Richardson, Panthers
You probably didn’t know that Richardson played in the NFL. This is because his career was undistinguished. In two years as a Baltimore Colt, Richardson caught just 15 passes. “Undistinguished” can also be applied to Richardson’s ownership career. In the 21 years (19 seasons) since the Panthers’ founding, there have been only five playoff appearances, and little consistency. Before 2013, the Panthers had won 11 or more games four times. All four times, they won eight or fewer the following season. As a person, Richardson’s humble persona is sometimes belied by surprisingly vicious actions. He infamously fired his own sons before even more infamously insulting Drew Brees and Peyton Manning during 2011’s CBA negotiations. Throughout the talks, Richardson was billed as the “least flexible and most pessimistic” of the owners, and didn’t seem to want to mediate with the union so much as break it. Finally, there’s Richardson’s stadium machinations. Despite Bank of America Stadium’s relative youth, Richardson has already ransomed the fine people of Charlotte for $87.5 million, and a favorable lease. With the team instructed to be sold within two years of Richardson’s death, it’s conceivable it could jump town. Richardson is to be commended for bringing football to the Carolinas, and seemingly doing his best to field a competitive team. But his actions in recent years have suggested that his ego comes before all else.
By Patrick Daugherty Rotoworld
Interesting.?. What is this garbage about the team being sold within 2 years of his death. That's news to me ... and not very good news. I wonder how this tidbit hasn't been discussed before, or did I miss it?