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Former Heisman winner released by Carolina

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The Carolina Panthers released backup
quarterback Chris Weinke on Tuesday.

Weinke, a former Heisman Trophy winner from Florida State,
hadn't been a regular starter since his rookie year in 2001. Weinke
struggled when he replaced injured starter Jake Delhomme in three
games late last season, throwing two touchdown passes and four
interceptions. He had a passer rating of only 67.4.

The 34-year-old Weinke, Carolina's fourth-round draft pick in
2001, started 15 games his rookie season when Carolina went 1-15.
He was replaced by Rodney Peete at the beginning of the 2002
season, and Jake Delhomme became the full-time starter a year
later.

Weinke played in only 12 games the past five seasons.

The move means Carolina will likely sign another quarterback to
back up Delhomme next season. The Panthers signed Brett Basanez
last week, but he is expected to be the No. 3 quarterback.

Weinke played minor league baseball for six years after high
school before enrolling at Florida State. He won the Heisman Trophy
as a 28-year-old senior in 2000.