CHARLOTTE - The Panthers have welcomed back Derek Anderson, re-signing the team's backup quarterback from last season.
Anderson proved to be an effective mentor for rookie quarterback
Initially signed by the Panthers as a free agent during training camp last August, the seven-year veteran was a Pro Bowler for the Cleveland Browns in 2007 under the guidance of offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski. Reuniting with Chudzinski last season, he was content with taking on a teaching role, only seeing the field late in the Panthers' final two games of the season. He didn't attempt a pass.
"I think I did some good things as far as my role, helping this team every week where I could, from trying to get the defense ready to helping Cam out," Anderson said after the 2011 season concluded. "Any little bit I could do every week, just based on things I've seen and experiences I've had, I tried to share.
"Being in this offense before and understanding things, I just tried to give subtle reminders, just little quick things that hit my brain during the course of the game or the course of preparation. It helps to have somebody who has been through it."
Anderson said he enjoyed football for the first time in a while last season. He had thrown 28 interceptions and 19 touchdowns over his previous three seasons - split between Cleveland and Arizona – after having thrown 29 touchdowns against 19 interceptions during his Pro Bowl year of 2007. That season, he became the first Browns quarterback to win 10 games since 1994.
An Oregon State product, Anderson still stands as the Pac-12 Conference's all-time leader with 11,249 passing yards.