With eight games officially in the books for the Carolina Panthers, it seems as if they may have stole the show this offseason with the arguably the best free agent signing by getting former New York Jets wide receiver Robby Anderson.
At the midway point of the season, Anderson is 3rd in the league in receiving yards (688), 7th in receptions (51), and 11th in targets 67. If you would have told Jets GM Joe Douglas that this is the type of production Anderson would have in 2020, would he still let him walk? Recently, Douglas was asked during a press conference on whether or not he regrets his decision.
"I've thought about Robby a lot. As you guys know, there's thousands of decisions that come across your desk throughout the year and I go back and I look at what I could have done better in specific situations. I thought our guys really did a fantastic job of really analyzing every position group's market value leading up to free agency last year and I think what was wrong with us and Robby, we thought that Robby's value was going to be even greater than what he signed for in Carolina. I think that's on me ultimately and that's on us moving forward to get a better handle on every player's market value. Honestly, we would all love to see Robby here doing what he's doing and I tip my hat to the success he has, but obviously we don't want to be in the business of losing big players."
Not only has Anderson turned himself into the Panthers No. 1 receiver, but he has put himself in the conversation as one of the best receivers in the entire league. Despite Douglas' regret to let Anderson walk, it may not have mattered if the Jets had serious interest in bringing him back. Once Matt Rhule got the job in Carolina, Anderson knew that's where he wanted to go because he played for Rhule during his college days at Temple and helped him through hard times.
“I wasn’t handling my business in the classroom. I fell short. I was academically suspended. How the school’s rules were set up, I wasn’t supposed to be able to come back to school for five years due to my suspension and my GPA. But Coach Rhule fought hard for literally like a whole year over and over and over and finally, they decided to change the university’s rules which gave me the chance to come back in the summer. I had to work hard and raise my GPA and took a crazy amount of summer classes just to get eligible to play my senior year. I can honestly say if it wasn’t for Coach Rhule making things happen, I wouldn’t be in the position that I’m in today. I know winning is in his blood and that’s what he’s here to do,” Anderson said. “There wasn’t much he had to sell me on… I wanted to be a Panther.”
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