The Associated Press
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Carolina Panthers running backs DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart have a new nickname, and added some spice to their disagreement with Tennessee’s running back tandem of LenDale White and Chris Johnson.
After rushing for 178 yards and breaking the Panthers’ single-season rushing record with 1,515 yards in a 33-31 win over New Orleans on Sunday, Williams announced he had created a Web site linked here, that solved the controversy over who owned the “Smash and Dash” nickname.
The site reveals the new name for Williams and Stewart: “Double Trouble.” But not before taking plenty of jabs at White, who had insisted Williams and Stewart had stolen their moniker.
The dispute over who should be called “Smash and Dash” comes as all four backs have helped their teams to the top of the standings. Williams and Stewart have combined for 2,351 yards rushing and 28 touchdowns for the Panthers (12-4), who are the No. 2 seed in the NFC playoffs. White and Johnson have rushed for 2,001 yards and 24 TDs for the Titans (13-3), the No. 1 seed in the AFC.
Williams’ Web site has a video introduction that looks like a campaign attack advertisement. It includes an unidentified announcer talking about the duo’s combined 301 yards rushing in the Panthers’ win over Tampa Bay on Dec. 8 — the night the Smash and Dash nickname took off.
“The Panthers earned the respect of fans, coaches and players alike — except for one person: LenDale White,” the announcer says.
Days after that game, White said he and Johnson had already claimed the name, suggesting perhaps Williams and Stewart should be called “Identity and Theft.”
Soon after White sent Williams T-shirts with pictures of himself and Johnson and the words “Tennessee Smash and Dash.” Williams promised a response, and the site makes fun of White’s claim that Snoop Dog would write a song about White and Johnson and that Titans running backs coach Earnest Byner trademarked the Smash and Dash name.
The video ends with Williams proclaiming, “This is Double Trouble and we approved this message.”
The Web site, called NamesWeCanBelievein.com, also shows Double Trouble T-shirts that will be sold to benefit charity.
“It’s very beautiful,” Williams said. “You guys are going to love it. … Fans, you’re going to enjoy this site as much as I did. You’ll see. After I saw it I was crying, literally in tears I was laughing so hard.”
Panthers coach John Fox claimed he didn’t know of the new name and hadn’t seen the video.
“I just think they’re both really good,” Fox said the Panthers’ duo. “I’m not a big Web site guy.”