|Panthers close to signing Muhammad, bringing receiver back to team where he began career|
|Written by Admin|
|Tuesday, 26 February 2008 14:02|
Muhammad's agent, Joel Segal, and Carolina general manager Marty Hurney said Tuesday that they are close to a deal that would return the veteran receiver to where he played his first nine seasons in the NFL.
``Hopefully we can get something done in the next day or so,'' Hurney said.
The two sides began talking shortly after Muhammad was released by the Chicago Bears last week. The Panthers, looking to get help for Steve Smith, have made receiver as one of the team's offseason priorities.
Muhammad and Smith started together for parts of three seasons, including in 2003 when the Panthers lost to New England in the Super Bowl.
Muhammad maintained a home in Charlotte after he was let go in a salary cap move following the 2004 season and his agent made it clear that Carolina is his client's top choice.
``Moose is certainly adamant about trying to do a deal here,'' Segal said.
Segal indicated he's had talks with other teams he would not identify. Both Hurney and Segal said a deal probably wouldn't be completed until Wednesday at the earliest.
``There are still issues to discuss and go through,'' Segal said.
It's unclear what role Muhammad would play with the Panthers. He turns 35 in May and was held to 40 catches for 570 yards and three touchdowns with the Bears last season.
The Panthers are hoping Dwayne Jarrett, who had a disappointing rookie season, will become the No. 2 receiver. Drew Carter and Keary Colbert, who split time there last season, become free agents on Friday and may not be re-signed.
Muhammad, who is considered a strong blocker, could become the No. 3 receiver and a mentor for Jarrett. Muhammad is also close friends with the moody Smith.
The 6-foot-2 Muhammad was Carolina's second-round pick in 1996 and had a career-high 102 catches in 2000.
Carolina is expected this week to sign Stephen Davis to a one-day contract so he can retire a Panther. Davis has not played in the NFL since 2006.
The Panthers have also restructured the contracts of CB Ken Lucas and DT Maake Kemoeatu to clear about $1 million in salary-cap space.