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Carolina Panthers

James Bradberry quietly making noise


This is not a fluff piece about the friendship between James Bradberry and Daryl Worley. Besides, the Panthers' bookend cornerbacks are kind of on the outs.

"I'm sick of him right now," Worley says. "He gets on my nerves. I can't wait for the break."

This is instead an exposé about Bradberry, who's apparently not as stoic as he seems.

"He's not quiet. He talks all day every day," Worley says. "He just whispers it, so no one hears it unless he's talking to you.

"He has a slick mouth. You guys don't hear it in the media, but he has a really slick mouth."

But that claim is coming from someone who's "sick" of his (former?) friend. So let's ask the guy who's been around Bradberry nearly as much as Worley the past year-plus.

"He's very talkative," defensive coordinator Steve Wilks says. "A lot of times he shows that part about being reserved, but he's very talkative and a really funny guy."

Heh, who knew?

In the interest of fairness, we have to let Bradberry defend himself.

"I don't talk all the time," he says in his usual mild-mannered tone that isn't much louder than a whisper. "I just talk a little bit more than people expect."

How much someone talks is relative, of course.

Bradberry may be "louder" than he lets on, but he's still nowhere close to as chatty as the Panthers' previous No. 24. The loose-lipped Josh Norman maintained he didn't say anything to opposing receivers unless they said something first. Bradberry claims the same.

"(Minnesota's) Stefon Diggs said something after he caught a ball," Bradberry recalls when asked to name a wideout who yapped at him last season. "I think he called himself, 'The Beast.' No, he said he was a dog or something like that."

So what did you say back?

"Nothing," Bradberry replies, "cause he caught the ball on me."

Free agent addition Russell Shepard has been around for only three months, but the enthusiastic wideout is well-versed on chatter. And after confirming Bradberry's silent on-field persona, Shepard makes an interesting comparison to one of his former teammates at LSU.

"He has a similar personality to Patrick Peterson," says Shepard, referring to the Cardinals' six-time Pro Bowl cornerback.

"They definitely have two different types of playing styles, but Pat is a very calm guy. Once he gets in his groove and he's comfortable with the people around him, Pat will talk a lot more."

So perhaps the problem is Bradberry is too comfortable with Worley. But, come on, what hurtful things could Bradberry be saying?

"He likes being called Dark Knight, and I refuse to call him that," Bradberry admits.

"I always tell him, 'You're not Batman. You're not invincible.'"

OK, that's gotta sting.

"He always says something mean," Worley says. "He waits till we get in the locker room."

At least their lockers aren't right next to each other.

Oh, wait, they are.

Now, in case you've read this far and are wondering if there is an actual rift, there isn't. Bradberry and Worley are essentially two bickering brothers. It's just that up until this highly important piece of journalism, Bradberry got away with being the supposedly quieter brother. 

"I try to motivate him any way I can," Bradberry says. "He's from Philly so he's a tough cat, so I try to get under his skin as much as possible.

"It's just fun and games."

View photos from Wednesday's mandatory minicamp session.

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