CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WKBW) — Carolina Panthers tight end Chris Manhertz is 27-years-old and earlier this year, signed a new two-year deal with the Panthers.
"I think it comes back full-circle," Manhertz said. "It's just a moment to reflect to see how far I've come. Obviously, I have a long way to go in my development and my other goals but I'm pleased with the progress that I've made."
Manhertz has spent the last three seasons with the Panthers but if his name sounds familiar it's because he spent even more time in Buffalo, just not on the football field.
"I look at my basketball career as a stepping stone that allowed me to be where I'm at today," he said. "It's just a matter of compounding those opportunities into something bigger."
Manhertz was a three-year captain with the Canisius College men's basketball team. He switched sports and never even played football, until he signed a future/reserve contract with the Bills.
"Buffalo was my second home," he said. "I spent five years of my life in Buffalo and it'll always have a place in my heart."
These days, Manhertz sits behind tight end Greg Olsen on the Panthers depth chart. Olsen speaks highly of the former basketball player.
"Considering he [Manhertz] had never played before and what he's been able to build his career up to at this point is really impressive," said Olsen. "It's a credit to him buying in and wanting to do this. It's not for everybody but he's done an amazing job and he's a great kid."
On Friday, it will come full-circle as Manhertz and the Panthers take on the Bills in the second preseason game. His time on the Bills roster was short but his memories in Buffalo will last a lifetime
"Buffalo was the team and was the city that gave me a chance and allowed me to develop," he said. "It was the stepping stone to where I'm at today."