Panthers have new 1-2 punch in backfield

Posted Nov. 29, 2010 @ 2:50 p.m.
Posted By Michael Blunda

DeAngelo Williams may be out for the season, but that doesn't mean the Panthers can't still have a dangerous backfield duo.

After missing two games with a concussion, Jonathan Stewart returned Sunday at Cleveland looking like a different player. His early-season struggles behind him, J-Stew ran for 98 yards on just 12 carries, by far his best output of 2010. His workload is only going to increase as his health gets back to 100 percent in the weeks to come, so be sure to grab him if another owner gave up on the third-year back too soon.

With Williams out, Stewart's new backfield mate is Mike Goodson, a smaller, shiftier runner who has really broken out the past few weeks. After rushing for at least 100 yards in two consecutive games as Carolina's featured back, Goodson had 14-55-1 rushing on Sunday and added eight receptions for 81 yards. He has proven to be very effective, and all signs point to the second-year player seeing about half the carries moving forward.

Just as Williams and Stewart were a productive pair, this duo could be in for similar success. The fact that their running styles are very different should keep defenses guessing, and given the Panthers' pathetic passing game, it's likely these two see lots of work down the stretch. Owners shouldn't be afraid to deploy either one.