Carolina Panthers: A Tribute to John Kasay

Matthew GilmartinSenior Analyst IJune 29, 2008

Loyalty is something very rare in pro sports today.  Players switch from team-to-team, attracted by the biggest paycheck.  Coaches are fired after their first year if their significantly underachieves - even if their players had mediocre skills and were uncoachable, concerned far more about their next paycheck than about winning.

Carolina Panthers placekicker John Kasay is a diamond in the rough - he's spent the last 13 seasons with the Panthers - since the team's first year in 1995. 

He hasn't followed the money like so many other pro athletes.  He has demonstrated incredible loyalty to Carolina over the past 13 seasons.  Part of that likely has something to do with his faith - he's a devout Christian. 

Only two other kickers have been with their current teams since '95 - Jason Elam of the Broncos and Jason Hanson of the Lions. 

The Athens, Georgia native is the points leader among current Panthers with 1504.  His closest competitor is wide receiver Steve Smith, who is about 800 points behind.

Kasay is third in the all-time record for kicks made from 50 yards or more (), and, in addition, he is the only one to register four made field goals of 45 yards or more in one game. 

Before the 1995 season the Panthers signed him as a free agent.  He had previously played for the Seattle Seahawks from 1991-94, scoring 341 points. 

Kasay, being a placekicker, can likely prolong his career a bit more than most other players could because he hardly ever gets touched.  But even so, he's 38 (turning 39 in October), and that's old for any NFL player - a kicker, running back, or defensive tackle. 

Us Panthers fans will miss you when you retire.  You have made your mark us, on the NFL, and on the game, John.  Thank you.  Good luck to you for the rest of your career.