Looking back at Sam Mills

By Randy Inman
Aug. 07, 2014

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

This is my Pantherlair look back at former Carolina Panthers player and Coach Sam Mills. My look back series will help remember some great players or coaches of the Carolina Panthers from their history.


Sam Mills was too small to be a Pro Bowl Linebacker but he became one anyway. Starting off in the USFL, Mills became a great linebacker for the New Orleans Saints. Joining the Carolina Panthers in their first season, Mills scored on an interception in the team's very first win.


When Mills hung up the cleats he became an assistant coach for the Carolina Panthers. With his love of and knowledge of the game I always felt that Mills would have been a head coach in the NFL.


But fate had other plans for Sam Mills. He fought cancer for two years before losing that battle in 2005. Sam Mills was elected to the college football Hall of Fame and is the only player with a statue and name in the ring of honor for the Carolina Panthers. The slogan "Keep Pounding' is in honor of Mr. Sam Mills.I heard Steve Smith say on the radio that Sam Mills is the greatest Carolina Panther of all time.