Geoff Hangartner, still somehow the ranking starting guard of the Ron
Rivera era, returned to the team this week.
2011's last minute scrap heap pickup turned into a serviceable starting
guard for the year; he made it through 2012 struggling and in need of
replacement, eventually turning to center with Ryan Kalil out. Despite
not adequately replacing him, the team dropped him in camp 2013.
Since then, Garry Williams, rookie Ed Kugbila, Chris Scott, and Jeff
Byers have gotten hurt. Carolina turned to its 6th RG of the year in
former DT Nate Chandler, who spent camp as an OT. Their 7th guy now was
their first - Hangartner. A smart, strong lineman, Hangartner is a good
pickup now - being able to backup C as well as play guard.
Hangartner seems as good a bet to start this week as anyone. He knows
the system - this is what Carolina used for most of his tenure since
being a 2005 5th round pick, and emergency lineman/occasional TE, before
he spent 2009-2010 as a mediocre starter in Buffalo.
His potential return, pending a physical, might be just what they
needed to make it through the season.