Carolina Panthers’ All-Time Sack Leaders
The Carolina Panthers began play in the NFL in 1995 as an expansion team. But they were instantly contending, reaching the NFC Championship game in 1996. The team has also been mostly competitive in its short existence, but lost in its lone Super Bowl appearance following the 2003 season. The Panthers have also had some fierce defensive players, and here is a short list of the team’s all-time sack leaders to date:
Julius Peppers (81)—Defensive end Julius Peppers played in Carolina from 2002 to 2009 before signing with the Bears before the 2010 season. Peppers leads the Panthers all-time with 81 sacks, and his career high to date is 14.5 sacks in 2008. But Peppers’ best overall season was arguably 2004, one of two seasons in which he was a first team All Pro. That year, Peppers had 11 sacks, with 2 interceptions including a 97 yard touchdown, 9 passes deflected, 4 forced fumbles, 1 fumble recovery for a 60 yard TD, career high 53 tackles, and 12 assists.
Mike Rucker (55.5)—Defensive end Mike Rucker played his entire career in Carolina, from 1999 to 2007, and he ranks second in franchise history with 55.5 sacks. Rucker had his best season in 2003, when he made the Pro Bowl with a career high 12 sacks, and added 1 interception, 6 passes deflected, 1 forced fumble, 48 tackles and 11 assists.
Kevin Greene (41.5)—Linebacker/defensive end Kevin Greene only played for the Panthers three seasons—1996,1998 and 1999. But in that short time, he racked up 41.5 sacks, ranking him third in Panthers’ history in that department. Greene had a career high 16.5 sacks with the Rams in 1989, but his best overall season could have been with Carolina in 1996, one of two times he was a first team All Pro. That year, Greene led the NFL with 14.5 sacks, and added 2 forced fumbles, 3 fumble recoveries including one for a touchdown, 37 tackles and 14 assists.
Lamar Lathon (23.5)—Linebacker/defensive end Lamar Lathon played in Carolina from 1995 to 1998, and he ranks fourth in team history with 23.5 sacks. Lathon had his best overall season in 1996 while with Carolina, his lone Pro Bowl selection. That year, Lathon had a career best 13.5 sacks, 1 forced fumble, 2 fumble recoveries, 54 tackles and 23 assists.
Kris Jenkins (20.5)—Defensive tackle Kris Jenkins began his career in Carolina and played for the Panthers from 2001 to 2007. Jenkins ranks fifth in franchise history with 20.5 sacks, and his best overall season was arguably 2002. That year was one of two times Jenkins was a first team All Pro, and he had a career high 7 sacks, adding 3 passes deflected, 36 tackles and 8 assists.