The story lighting up the NFL world on Wednesday morning is the fact that Panthers center Ryan Kalil took out an ad in the Charlotte Observer guaranteeing the Panthers would win Super Bowl XLVII.

Except ... well, he only kind of did that. Kalil did take out an ad. And the ad does contain, in huge bold letters, the words "Why the Carolina Panthers Will Win Super Bowl XLVII," but it's not some silly brash guarantee. (Click the image to the right or here to embiggen.)

And you can hear that in Kalil's words to the Observer's Joe Person:

"Every team says it every year, whether it’s publicly or not,” Kalil said. “They say they’re going to win the Super Bowl. We’ve said it in the past in meeting rooms and behind closed doors. This year’s different. There’s a sense of urgency, a winning attitude that I haven’t seen before. And it’s in the way we prepare.

"It’s in the way we approach each work day, and I think fans will see it in the way that we play."

Now, it is perfectly acceptable and perfectly OK to rip Kalil for this. He's guaranteeing a Super Bowl. He took out a newspaper ad without checking with teammates and coaches. But this isn't some brash, dumb comment made in the heat of a press conference during the summer.

Instead, it reads as a letter thanking the fans for their support since the franchise began. Just, you know, with a guarantee attached.

The response from fans and teammates to Kalil, a member of the Panthers since they drafted him in the second round of the 2007 NFL Draft, will be interesting. Linebacker Jon Beason, another of the team's leaders, has already come out in support of the ad.

The Panthers, for their part, certainly seem OK with the ad, calling Kalil a "hero that Charlotte deserves."