Robby Anderson is the Key That Unlocked Panthers' Offense

Josh Altorfer

On Apr 1, 2020, the Carolina Panthers officially signed free agent wide receiver Robby Anderson to a two-year, $20 million dollar contract. Most Panthers fans probably reacted with something like, "That fast, skinny dude from the Jets?". Precisely. Maybe you remembered his highlight reel catching deep bombs from some no-name Jets quarterback. Maybe he even helped you win one week in fantasy football when you picked him up off waivers to cover a heavy bye week. Whatever came to mind one thing is certain: Robby Anderson has exceeded expectations in Carolina so far this season. 

Don't get me wrong Anderson was always a solid deep threat for the New York Jets. It just didn't make much sense for a team that signed Teddy Bridgewater to be its starting quarterback to add a receiver that only runs the deep routes, something that Teddy struggles to throw. Little did we know Anderson doesn't just run the deep routes. He can run a full route tree and is dangerous with the ball in his hands after the catch.

Anderson currently sits at No. 4 in the entire NFL in yards after catch (YAC) with 223 and is the leading pass-catcher for the Panthers with 489 total yards receiving. He has settled into his role as Teddy's favorite target. He might have even surpassed teammate D.J. Moore as the teams' No. 1 receiver altogether. 

Anderson is on pace for an outstanding 1,565 receiving yards this season. That would demolish his previous career-high of 941 that he had back in 2017. It could very well lead the league if he is able to continue at that rate.

Anderson's impact has exceeded the stat sheet, however. He has proven to be a quiet leader that the team and fanbase have fully embraced. 

Coming into the 2020 season, opposing teams knew that the key to beat the Panthers was to slow down All-Pro running back Christian McCaffrey and D.J. Moore in the passing game. The addition of Robby Anderson has proved to be too much for defenses to handle. All credit goes to GM Marty Hurney, HC Matt Rhule, and OC Joe Brady for realizing the hidden potential that Anderson possessed. His ability has truly opened up the offense and been the key to Carolina's early-season offensive success. 

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