Carolina Panthers

Carolina Panthers Mike Tolbert: Nick Fairley’s hit was hardest I’ve taken

Carolina Panthers running back Tolbert extended the greatest compliment a rusher can give a defensive player to Detroit Lions defensive tackle Nick Fairley.

“I’d have to say, give him credit, that is the hardest I’ve ever been hit in my life,” Tolbert said.

Tolbert was still sore Wednesday afternoon from a hit Fairley delivered on him in the fourth quarter of last week’s 24-7 win against Lions.

On second-and-1 from the Detroit 1, Tolbert was met 4 yards behind the line of scrimmage when Byron Bell let Fairley slide by him and right guard Trai Turner couldn’t pull in time. The result was Fairley knocking the wind out of Tolbert, which forced him out for the rest of the game with a chest contusion.

“When the hit happened, he knocked the air out of me and fell on me,” Tolbert said. “And that’s when it all went bad. It hurts but at the same time I can play with it so I’m going to be all right.”

Tolbert was in good spirits when he talked about the hit.

“Now I can (laugh), but Sunday it was not a laughing matter,” he said.