Panthers 2021 season opener countdown: 58 days to go

We’re only 58 days away from the start of the Panthers’ 2021 season, so today’s piece on the countdown is dedicated to the man who wore No. 58 for 14 years in Carolina — linebacker Thomas Davis.

Thomas Davis was selected by the Panthers with the No. 14 pick in the 2005 NFL Draft, and he played the majority of his career in Carolina before signing with the Los Angeles Chargers in 2019. After a one-year stint with the Washington Football Team in 2020, Davis announced his retirement from the game and signed a one-day contract on March 11 to retire as a Carolina Panther.

Needless to say, Davis was one of the best linebackers in the NFL. This is especially true when you consider that he’s the only player in the history of the league to recover from three ACL injuries and not only continue his career, but be even better than he was before the first injury. During his career, he was a three-time Pro Bowler (2015-2017), First-Team All Pro (2015), Second-Team All Pro (2013), the Walter Payton Man of the Year (2014), and the recipient of the Bart Starr Award (2016).

Back in March when Davis was set to retire, I wrote an article highlighting his comeback from injuries to become one of the game’s best linebackers. The following clip from that piece is a perfect summary of my feelings about him.

Other than Sam Mills, there…

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BW Smith

BW Smith

SB Nation - Cat Scratch Reader

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I write stories about football for Cat Scratch Reader. I’m also the Managing Editor so I get to tell people what to do. It’s pretty neat. Also, go Gamecocks!

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