Entering his 7th season in the NFL, Ted Ginn will be showcasing himself for the Carolina Panthers. Up until the 2013 preseason, Ginn has been mostly known for his contributions on special teams. However, after the 25-10 Panthers win over the Pittsburgh Steelers, Ginn was finally recognized for his talents as a wide receiver. He reeled in five catches for 149 yards and two touchdowns. This was a major eye-opener for the coaching staff and for defenses who will be facing the Panthers in the regular season.
Drafted in 2007 by the Miami Dolphins, Ginn was primarily used for kick-off returns, and only occasionally on offensive plays. In 2008 he had his best seasonal performance as a wide receiver, but his special teams production dropped significantly. The 2009 season was very similar to his rookie year, excelling in returns but being used sparingly on offense. The following season he was traded to the San Francisco 49ers where again he was used primarily for special teams, only taking a few snaps on offense at wide receiver.
Since his first two seasons, Ginn has never really had a chance to shine on offense. He has incredible speed but has only been used for returns. Since joining the Panthers in 2013, he has finally gotten his chance to showcase his speed along with his hands. In the 2013 preseason, Ginn was the second most targeted wide receiver behind David Gettis, who was recently placed on the injured reserve list. In just four games this preseason, Ginn out-performed his 2010, 2011, and 2012 regular season statistics in receiving yards and touchdowns.
Although the Panthers have apparently given the number two wide receiver position to the Brandon LaFell, the spot remains a toss up for anyone. Ginn still has a serious fighting chance to prove his worth at not only special teams but also as a wide receiver. Expect the Panthers to give him a shot to showcase himself at that position throughout the season. If Ginn can consistently catch the ball and extend the play with his speed, he will be another great target for Cam Newton. That would make him the added receiving threat Steve Smith and the coaches have been looking for.