Ted Ginn Jr. is one of the more notable players the Carolina Panthers signed this offseason. After starting his career with fairly high expectations as a wide receiver, Ginn now has the dreaded title of ‘return specialist.’ You can bet that players who think of themselves as receivers, probably don’t like be being tagged as just being part of the special teams unit. But with a change in scenery, could Ginn reemerge in the Panthers’ passing game this season?
One thing is for sure, Carolina needs receivers and playmakers on offense. There’s a decent amount of talent in place, but it’s far from being a dynamic unit. Steve Smith is still holding down the team’s top receiver spot, but the Panthers have yet to have a player step up and clearly establish themselves in the No. 2 spot behind him. Ginn could possibly be that guy, if given the opportunity.
Obviously the Panthers want Ginn for the return game, but I think they’d be dumb to not let him have a chance to earn more playing time at receiver. So far all reports from OTAs are that Ginn will be seeing some time at wide receiver, but it’s unclear just how much. He realistically will end up as the No. 3 or 4 guy on the depth chart, which is certainly better than nothing.
Ginn deserves another chance at being a full-time wide receiver. Maybe he won’t ever live up to his top-10 draft pick status, but he’s still in line for a significant increase in targets this year. The Panthers have nothing to lose by seeing what he can offer as a pass-catcher, because they’re going to need all hands on deck to have chance at making the postseason in 2013.
Best case scenario – Ginn becomes an X-Factor type of player for the Panthers.
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