Rookie QB, Randy Fasani Could Start Against Bucs After Weinke's Concussion

Oct. 22, 2002

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Carolina quarterback Chris Weinke spent the night inthe hospital with a concussion, leaving the Panthers with rookie RandyFasani as their only healthy option for this week's game against Tampa Bay.

'At this point, I'm starting. I'm excited at the chance to start for the Panthers. You never know what's going to happen.'
Stanford Alum Randy Fasani

Weinke was knocked out of Sunday's loss to Atlanta and spent the night in aCharlotte hospital being treated for a serious concussion. He was releasedMonday, but coach John Fox said he didn't know if Weinke would be able toface the Bucs and their top-ranked defense.

'He lost some memory of the day, (but) he never was unconscious,' Fox said.'I can't speak hypothetically, but right now he's not healthy. So Randyright now would be our starter going into the week.'

Rodney Peete, who started the first six games for Carolina, had surgery onhis knee last week and is out until next month. So that leaves Fasani as theonly option, unless the Panthers sign someone.

Fox said the team would consider bringing in a quarterback, but refused tospeculate on whom the team might work out Tuesday.

The coaching staff told Fasani, a fifth-round draft pick from Stanford, to be ready to work with the first team offense Wednesday and prepare as ifhe'll start against Tampa Bay.

'At this point, I'm starting,' Fasani said. 'I'm excited at the chance to start for the Panthers. You never know what's going to happen.'

Weinke, in his first start of the season, completed three of eight passesfor 26 yards. He ran twice for 15 yards, but was sacked three times.

Then he was injured and Fasani took over.

Fasani completed six of 18 passes for 100 yards with an interception. Herushed eight times for 58 yards and was sacked once.

Fox said he would not hesitate to start Fasani on Sunday.

'He's smart, he's got a lot of intangibles that I think are important,' Foxsaid. 'He does have that mobility that is helpful and I think with timehe'll be a fine young player. I feel very confident in Randy Fasani.

'Now, we don't have a lot of depth after him at this point. That probablyconcerns me more than starting Randy.'

AP Sports Writer

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