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Ben Hartsock: This Was The Closest Team I’ve Ever Been On

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(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

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Carolina Panthers Tight End and current free agent, Ben Hartsock joins the show to discuss the life of being a blocking tight end, flying under the radar, the playoff run and his future with the team.

On the playoff run: This playoff run was probably the most gratifying for me (he’s been on seven playoff teams). I came here in Coach Rivera’s first year and we were down. We struggled for a couple years and were kind of out of the picture, so it makes it that much more gratifying to see the team come to where it’s become now.
On the playoff loss to the 49ers: The two goal line stands, to have first and goal on the one yard line  and to only come away with three points from both of those drives, you can’t win playoff games like that. That’s the discouraging part, because up to that point we had been a very strong short yardage team over the past couple years. Personally, I’m one of those thumper kind of guys, so I take that a little personal that we weren’t able to punch it in when we need to there. You have to continue to keep momentum in these games, especially in playoff football when teams are so evenly matched.
On His Future: For sure [he wants to be back with the Panthers].This was as close a team as I’ve ever been apart of. In the locker room, guys caring about on another, by the end of the year we knew how to work, but we knew how to have fun doing it. I’d love to be back and be a part of it, but my contract is so much on the back burner of bigger issues for Mr. Gettleman. If they want me back, and I think they do, the coaches seem to respect me and the front office also gives me respect and likes what I do. Its just a matter of whether or not they can make those things work. A backup blocking tight end in this league doesn’t have a whole lot of leverage. Anything that comes my way, I’ll be grateful for it.
Jim asks Ben about giving a Ram the heave ho, and he discusses asking for the football, Cam skipping the ball to him against Seattle last season and his mother’s website.
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