Sometimes "right" isn't easy

Davis

After Sunday's 27-10 win over the New Orleans Saints, Carolina Panthers coach John Fox talked about how tough a decision it was to put running back Stephen Davis on injured reserve because of swelling in his knee.

Davis has been trying to come back from microfracture knee surgery. While he had 12 touchdowns this season, he averaged just 3.1 yards per carry and his playing time had been greatly reduced in recent weeks.

The knee became too swollen for Davis to play effectively, and the decision to shut him down, which was somewhat unexpected, came Saturday.

"With Stephen Davis, that was a very hard decision because of what Stephen Davis has done here - not only for the city of Charlotte and the organization, but for me personally," Fox said. "I know we don't go to the Super Bowl (in 2003) without him. That was a very, very hard decision. Sometimes you know right's not always easy. We needed the roster spot for guys on special teams and a running back. It was something we felt was necessary at this point."

However, the Panthers have yet to fill Davis' spot, since the decision to release him came Saturday.

With Davis out for the season, Nick Goings, last year's super sub down the stretch for the Panthers, saw an increased role in the offense on Sunday against the Saints.

He had 88 total yards from scrimmage, which was more than starter DeShaun Foster.

Goings came up with some big plays on a touchdown drive just before halftime that gave Carolina a 17-7 lead. He broke free for a 12-yard run for one first down and later caught a 30-yard pass from Delhomme to set up the touchdown.

Fox also addressed the decision to release wide receiver Rod Gardner on Friday.

"We gave up a sixth-round draft pick, and we gave him every opportunity," Fox said. "We just felt like it was time to get Drew Carter a chance."

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