Position preview: Specialists


Two years ago, kicker Graham Gano was a mid-season acquisition and punter Brad Nortman was a rookie in transition. After excellent 2013 seasons, both players have settled in to their roles and are primed for long-term success in Carolina.

As for the punt and kick returners, there will be change this year with wide receiver Ted Ginn, Jr. having left via free agency. There are a number of candidates that will compete for those roles in training camp.


Graham Gano
Converted 24-of-27 field goal attempts and all 42 extra points for a team-leading 114 points in 2013. ... Established a career high with an 88.9 field goal percentage. ... Equaled career-best streak of 14 consecutive field goals made. ... Set a franchise record and tied for the NFL lead for most made field goals of 50 yards or more with six. ... Led the NFL with a 77.8 touchback percentage, the highest touchback percentage in the NFL since 1994.

Brad Nortman
Set team record with gross average of 47.8 yards in 2013, which ranked second in the NFC and fourth in the NFL. ... Set team record with net average of 41.6 yards ranked fourth in the NFC and fifth in the NFL. ... Punted 70 times with a career-high 25 inside the 20, five touchbacks and career long of 72 yards. ... Named NFC Special Teams Player of the Month for December.

Jordan Gay
Signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by Carolina and was waived during the preseason in 2013. ... Three-time Southern Athletic Association Special Teams Player of the Year at Division III Centre College. ... Hit a 73-yard punt as a junior on his way to a 42.7-yard career average.


J.J. Jansen
Has handled long snapping duties inevery game for last five seasons since Panthers acquired him in a trade from the Green Bay Packers in 2009. ... Successful on all 139 snaps in 2013. ... 2013 Pro Bowl selection was responsible for three special teams tackles.

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