Cam Newton’s unprecedented rookie season revived the Carolina Panthers and their fanbase. And his instant impact also caught the eye of fellow players around the NFL, including wide receiver Plaxico Burress.
In a radio interview Monday, the veteran free agent said that “no doubt about it,” he wants to play for the Panthers next season.
“...Playing with Cam, who I think is one of the top five quarterbacks in all of football, and as long as I can remember Steve Smith has been one of my favorites,” Burress told WFNZ in Charlotte. “I just think it’s a great situation.”
Burress, 34, said he has received calls from other NFC South teams but is waiting to hear from the Panthers.
Burress, who has family in the Charlotte area and South Carolina, caught 45 passes for 612 yards and eight touchdowns with the New York Jets last season — his first after serving a two-year prison sentence in New York.
The Panthers tried to address their issues at wideout with a scatter-shot approach and currently have 15 receivers on the roster including eight rookies. But other than Steve Smith — whose instant chemistry with Newton produced 1,394 and seven touchdowns — none have a proven NFL track record.
The last time the Carolina Panthers had a big, proven wide receiver to pair with the speedy Smith, they won the NFC. At this stage of his career, Burress may not be Mushin Muhammad, but as he showed last season in New York, he can still make plays, particularly in the end zone.
“I just want to put myself in a position to go out and have success and to make the guys around me better and obviously play with a quarterback who can really play the position,” Burress said. “It’s just about me picking my spots and seeing where I’m a good fit. You just look at a situation like Carolina. You can’t come across a better situation than that.”