One former county player is still playing football.
Mike Tolbert, a former standout at Douglas County High, will be playing today when the NFC South division champions host the Seattle Seahawks in a playoff game.
Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. at Charlotte’s Bank of America Stadium.
The 250-pound Tolbert is having a Pro Bowl season for the Panthers as a fullback and special teams players. He was a big part of the Panthers’ success, which included an NFL-best record of 15-1.
The team’s only loss came three weeks ago at the Georgia Dome to the Atlanta Falcons.
But for now, Tolbert and his teammates focus has been to get to the Super Bowl in California.
It starts today against the Seahawks, who lost to New England in last year’s Super Bowl game.
“Right now we have been trying to polish some things to get ready,” Tolbert said earlier this week in a press conference. “We know what we have to do when the time comes. We just want to be as crisp as possible when the time comes.”
The Panthers had a bye last week as the Seahawks defeated Minnesota 10-9 on the road in minus six degree weather.
It will be a change today in Charlotte where temperatures are expected to be in the mid 40s for kickoff.
Tolbert was named to the NFL Pro Bowl because of his performance in helping the Panthers this season. This will be Tolbert’s second time being named to the Pro Bowl team.
He is part of a Carolina franchise-record 10 players selected to the game. The Panthers' previous high came in 1996, when eight players were selected.
On the season, Tolbert has 197 rushing yards on 52 carries with a touchdown. He is averaging 3.8 yards per carry.
A target out of the backfield for Panthers All-Pro quarterback Cam Newton, he has 17 receptions for 149 yards and three touchdowns.
Tolbert has been reliable as a short-yardage rusher in addition to being a contributor on the special teams.
Earlier this week, Tolbert and fellow running back Jonathan Stewart bought their offensive linemen flat-screen TVs as an award for their success.
“They’re two good guys,” Panthers guard Fernando Velasco told the Charlotte Observer about the gift. “They did it to let us know they appreciate us and the work that we do. We just try to pay them back by opening up a lot of holes each and every week.”