Running back Birmingham Highlights Carolina Panthers Practice Squad Signees

Matthew GilmartinSenior Analyst IAugust 31, 2008

In my article on the Panthers' final roster reduction to shrink their roster to 53 players, I mentioned that I disagreed with some particular moves the team made.

By signing the five players below to their practice squad, their front office has screwed up yet again.

*Note that all these players initially got cut.

RB Decori Birmingham

I really liked what I saw of Birmingham in the preseason, especially in the first preseason game against the Colts.  He rushed for 70 yards on 17 carries in that game and made several impressive hustle plays.  This is the one new member of the practice squad I like.


WR William Buchanon

At first I was surprised that we signed this guy to our practice squad instead of Travis Taylor or Samie Parker—but maybe another team snatched Taylor or Parker off the waiver wire. 

But I'm still surprised that we kept him.  Buchanon only made one catch for 21 yards in lengthy stints in each of the Panthers' four preseason games.

But I guess at least some of the members of your practice squad have to be scrubs.


S Joe Fields

Apparently we were high on another scrub.  Fields notched six tackles, two deflections, and one interception in four preseason games.  If I were the one deciding who to sign to the practice squad, I wouldn't have picked this guy up.


DT Nick Hayden

I was taken aback by the fact that he let this guy go to begin with.  He was a sixth-round draft pick this year.  Now that I think about it, this guy must be a bust the Panthers are trying to keep quiet—he only had one pass deflection even though he played in all four preseason games.


T Geoff Schwartz

The most eye-catching part of Schwartz's track record is that he played on the line that blocked for rookie running back Jonathan Stewart at Oregon last season.  He sucked in the preseason.  I never once heard his name on the preseason game telecasts, in the paper, or on the web.

The only guy I'm happy to see on the practice squad is Birmingham.  It's a miracle that no team with a screwy backfield picked up him up off the waiver wire.  But I guess you do have to have mostly scrubs on your practice squad—it is the practice squad, after all.