Who will be the No. 2 receiver this year opposite Steve Smith? (AP Photo)
CHARLOTTE – A couple of weeks ago wide receiver Dwayne Jarrett fired his agent and hired Drew Rosenhaus to represent him, immediately raising speculation he might want to be traded.
But if Jarrett does want out of Carolina he isn’t saying so.
“I’m here right now and I love being in Carolina, so this is where I’m at,” Jarrett said during a break in minicamp. “That’s all that’s on my mind right now, coming out here and helping the team anyway I can. I really can’t think about not being here or being traded or going to another team. My main focus is to be the best I can be.”
Jarrett opened minicamp as the No. 2 receiver opposite Steve Smith, but there’s also the reality he might not be here come September after the Panthers drafted three receivers last weekend -- Brandon LaFell and Armanti Edwards in the third round and David Gettis in the sixth.
“It’s part of the game,” Jarrett said. “You have to keep drafting good players to get to the Super Bowl. I’m all for it. It’s all about competing so when you walk in there on Sunday it’s like a cakewalk.”
Jarrett’s career here in Carolina has been anything but a cakewalk.
He’s been slow to develop and his contributions here can be summed up in a two-minute highlight reel -- and that’s with two 30-second commercials thrown in. In three seasons, the former second-round draft pick has started only three games and caught 33 passes for 338 yards and one touchdown.
If there’s some good news for Jarrett it’s that he has a low base salary in 2010, meaning the Panthers aren’t going to save much money, if any, by cutting him.
Jarrett said despite the presence of LaFell, Edwards and Gettis, he feels like he’ll be given a fair shot to win the No. 2 receiver spot opposite Smith.
“Yeah, I have been here for three years and I know the ins and outs of the playbook,” he said. “I’m a vet, so I have to play like a vet. I hold myself at high standards and I know the coaches do. All I have to do is keep working hard and try to help Smitty (Steve Smith) out on the other side.”
GROSS BEING PATIENT: Offensive tackle Jordan Gross said he fully expects to be ready for training camp when the Panthers report to Spartanburg, S.C., on July 30.
Gross isn’t participating in the rookie minicamp and may sit out workouts in June, too.
“I’m coming along,” Gross said. “I had a checkup before minicamp and everything is right on schedule. It’s just a timely process. They told me six to eight months right from the beginning and I’m almost at six months. I’m thinking for training camp I will be normal. The leg is definitely getting stronger, so I’m excited about that.”
Gross is doing a little running on the side, but wants to make sure the screws and plates have helped heal the broken bones in his leg.
“There was a lot of repair in there and they just told me to be patient,” Gross said. “So that’s what I’m trying to do.”
CHANGE CAN BE GOOD: Since coming into the league in 2001, Steve Smith has been working under the tutelage of veteran wide receivers coach Richard Williamson. But with Williamson now retired, Smith is getting to used to new receivers coach Tyke Tolbert, who has him doing a variety of drills he’s never done before.
“I have a great amount of respect for coach Williamson and he’s been my coach for a long time,” Smith said. “At the same time I’m learning quite a bit from Tyke Tolbert. He’s doing things a little different. Not to say it’s bad or to take anything away from (Williamson), but it’s just different and there are some things I have to get used to. Change can be good and I think it can be a good fit.”
Smith said he spoke with Terrell Owens and Anquan Boldin about Tolbert. Both star receivers have played under Tolbert in the past.
“They had nothing but great things to say about him,” Smith said.
NORWOOD A BEAST: Cornerback Captain Munnerlyn said he’s excited about being teammates again with Eric Norwood, his roommate at South Carolina.
He thinks Norwood, who has been working at both strong side linebacker and defensive end in minicamp, will be a huge asset to the Panthers following an All-American career with the Gamecocks.
“You can expect a guy who is going to go 110 percent every day,” Munnerlyn said. “I’ve seen it. And when it’s game time he just turns it up another notch. He goes 150 percent in a game. In a game he just turns into a beast.”
However, when asked if he’d like to be roommates with Norwood again and if he can crash at his place, Munnerlyn joked, “I told him he better not. He better go get his own place.”
WAITING ON A FRIEND: Munnerlyn said he’s been in contact with cornerback Richard Marshall, who has chosen not to sign his tender with the Panthers and is sitting out the minicamp sessions.
“He called to check on his teammates and I know he misses us,” Munnerlyn said. “But he’s got to do what he’s got to do.”
With Marshall not here, Munnerlyn is working with the first-team defense.
“(His absence) is giving me an opportunity for coaches to see me more with the first team and I kind of appreciate it,” Munnerlyn said with a laugh.
NEWS AND NOTES: Geoff Schwartz, who played very well at right tackle the last three games of the 2009 season, is getting a look at right guard this week. The Panthers opted not to re-sign Keydrick Vincent and Mackenzy Bernadeau, his expected replacement, has been limited in practice meaning Schwartz is getting a few extra reps. At 6-foot-6 and 331 pounds, some might consider Schwartz too big to play inside, but the Panthers are taking a peak anyway... With Gross and Jeff Otah sitting out, Rob Petitti and Garry Williams are working as the first team offensive tackles... Both star running backs DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart remain out of action recovering from minor off-season surgeries... The Panthers added fullback Josh Vaughan from Richmond to the roster on Saturday.