Ranking the Top 5 Quarterbacks in Carolina Panthers History
The Carolina Panthers franchise hasn't even existed for two decades, yet it already contains a long list of quarterbacks. From the early days of Kerry Collins to the present day of Cam Newton, there is a detailed history of the position that many aren't informed of.
There have been 33 players that have thrown a ball for the Panthers organization in its short life, but only five have made this exclusive group and only one can be named the best that has ever played for the Panthers.
There is also another young quarterback who you might have in mind that may very well be mentioned in the same light as these players very soon.
You all know how it works so let's move on to the list.
5. Rodney Peete, 2002-2004
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Career Record: 8-7
Career Stats: 2,652 Yds, 15 TD, 14 Int, 76.6 Rate
Peete was a significant piece to the puzzle when John Fox came to Carolina and attempted to turn the franchise around. Following a 1-15 season, Peete and the Panthers improved to a 7-9 record as the quarterback did his best managing job.
Peete certainly wasn't recognized for his consistent play, but he was an important bridge for the Panthers until Jake Delhomme took over the starting duties in Peete's second season with the team.
4. Matt Moore, 2007-2010
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Career Record: 7-6
Career Stats: 2,640 Yds, 16 TD, 17 Int, 73.9 Rate
Matt Moore showed flashes and was always a fan favorite as Jake Delhomme's career tailed off with the team. Moore stepped in during the 2009 season and was wildly successful. In a five game stretch to end the season, Moore led the league with a passer rating upwards of 100 and finished the season with eight touchdowns and only two interceptions.
Heading into the following season, he competed with rookie Jimmy Clausen for the starting job and was eventually overcome after multiple disappointing performances. In a similar amount of playing time as the previous season, Moore quintupled his interception percentage and his dismal 55.6 Rate was too low for the team to give him another chance.
3. Kerry Collins, 1995-1998
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Career Record: 22-20
Career Stats: 8,306 Yds, 47 TD, 54 Int, 66.0 Rate
Collins was selected by the Panthers with the fifth overall pick in 1995, becoming the first draft choice in team history. He also turned out to be the team's first ever bust. He was never particularly efficient as a college quarterback and the pick never made sense to me.
During the '98 season, Collins requested a trade after a slow start by the team. His problems with alcohol abuse were a large part in his falling out with Carolina and he never could quite live up to the potential that the franchise saw in him.
However, his 1996 season will always be remembered as he boosted the team into the playoffs and showed serious promise for the future.
2. Steve Beuerlein, 1996-2000
Career Record: 23-28
Career Stats: 12,690 Yds, 86 TD, 50 Int, 87.7 Rate
Steve Beuerlein bounced around to numerous NFL teams, but he was never as successful with any other as he was with the Panthers. His 1999 performance remains the most prolific by a Panthers quarterback in team history, as he led the league in passing yards—4,436—and finished the season with a stellar 36:15 touchdown to interception ratio.
In his stay with Carolina, Beuerlein was never able to find exceptional success at getting his team to win, but some games, he just made your jaw drop and it seemed that it was only a matter of time before he and the team would take off, but sadly, it never happened that way.
1. Jake Delhomme, 2003-2009
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Career Record: 53-37
Career Stats: 19,258 Yds, 120 TD, 89 Int, 82.6 Rate
Was there really any question about this one? Delhomme is undoubtedly the best quarterback ever to line up at the position for Carolina and he'll always be remembered fondly by Panthers' faithful.
Delhomme's magical habit for just getting the job done earned him respect around the league. His gunslinger mentality was relatively unmatched at his time and you couldn't help but love the guy, then hate him, and then love him again. He was your prototypical up-and-down quarterback that always kept you on the edge of your seat.
It's sad that his ending in Carolina was not in the best fashion, or on the most positive note, but if you don't recognize what Delhomme did for this franchise, then you likely never watched him play a game.