Shark Bites

Panthers HC Ron Rivera revealed Thursday that WR Kelvin Benjamin is dealing with knee swelling after taking a hit in last Thursday night's loss to the Eagles. Rivera admitted that he's "a little concerned" about Benjamin's availability for Sunday's game against the Bears. He's yet to practice this week. We'll see if he can get on the field tomorrow.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that Panthers MLB Luke Kuechly has passed his concussion testing and that the team doesn't believe he actually suffered a concussion in Thursday night's loss to the Eagles. That's an interesting development, given that the team announced Kuechly was in the protocol after the game. But it's obviously good news after Kuechly lost 9 games to concussions over the past 2 years. Barring any late-developing symptoms, we'll expect Kuechly to be active for Week 7 at Chicago.

Panthers MLB Luke Kuechly left Thursday night's loss to the Eagles after suffering a concussion on a hit by Philly G Brandon Brooks. It wasn't a particularly scary scene, as Kuechly never hit his head on the ground, left the field under his own power and jogged to the locker room. But he didn't return and did enter the league concussion protocol. Carolina has 10 days before its next game, which helps Kuechly's chances of not missing further time. But he lost 9 total games over the past 2 years to concussions, memorably leaving the field in tears after last year's injury. We'll see how the situation plays out this time around. David Mayo stepped in Thursday night and would start in Kuechly's place if he misses further time.

Panthers DE Mario Addison (knee) and Julius Peppers (shoulder) are active for today's game at Detroit. Both pass rushers entered the day questionable after barely practicing during the week. It's a common scenario for Peppers, who should be used as normal. Addison carries a bit more risk but faces a better individual matchup. As the starting right DE, Addison will get Lions LT Greg Robinson (rather than RT Rick Wagner). Pro Football Focus grades Robinson 65th among 66 qualifying OTs.

Panthers DE Mario Addison (knee) and DE Julius Peppers (shoulder) are both questionable for Sunday's game at Detroit. Addison returned to a limited practice Friday after missing the 1st 2 days. Peppers sat out all 3 days of workouts. We'll check on their statuses Sunday morning. Each carries obvious risk as an IDP option.

Panthers WR Curtis Samuel (back) isn’t listed on the final Week 5 injury report. He’ll play against the Lions on Sunday after missing last week’s game. The rookie has just 43 total yards through appearances and isn’t a fantasy option.

Panthers S Kurt Coleman sprained the MCL in his left knee in Sunday's win over the Patriots and could miss a month, the team reported Monday. Rookie Demetrious Cox is expected to step in next to SS Mike Adams, with Colin Jones also rotating in, according to ESPN's David Newton. The Panthers head to Detroit this Sunday.

The Panthers have ruled CB Daryl Worley out for Sunday's game at New England because of a shoulder injury. He missed the whole week of practice. LB Thomas Davis, however, didn't even make the final injury report despite missing 2 days and putting in only a limited workout Friday. He's dealing with a rib injury but appears ready to play. We'll certainly keep an eye out Sunday for his status.

Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin (knee) is not listed on the final Week 4 injury report. He put in full practices on Thursday and Friday, so that knee shouldn’t be an issue against the Patriots this weekend. Despite QB Cam Newton’s struggles, Benjamin is worth getting into fantasy lineups for that plus matchup.

Panthers WR Curtis Samuel (back) is out for Sunday’s game against the Patriots. We don’t have any details on the injury — but Samuel has struggled staying healthy early in his pro career. His absence leaves Russell Shepard as Carolina’s #3 WR.

The Panthers listed WR Kelvin Benjamin (knee) as a full participant in Thursday's practice. He's obviously on track to play against the Patriots this weekend. That's a plus matchup, putting Benjamin in the WR2 mix, despite his QB's struggles.

Panthers LB Thomas Davis sat out Wednesday's practice with a rib injury that knocked him out of Sunday's loss to the Saints. We'll keep an eye on his participation as the week progresses.

Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin (knee) did not practice on Wednesday. He did do some stretching and rode a stationary bike, per insider Joe Person. Benjamin dodged a serious knee injury but is still no better than 50/50 for Sunday's game against the Patriots.

An MRI on Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin's left knee revealed no structural damage, ESPN's David Newton reports. "Now it is how fast Benjamin responds to treatment," Newton adds. "Too early to tell for this week." So it sounds like Benjamin is iffy for Week 4 but avoided a long-term injury. We'll track his progress throughout the week. WR Devin Funchess and RB Christian McCaffrey will be the 2 best target bets in Carolina for however long Benjamin is out.

A source tells NFL Network's Ian Rapoport that Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin avoided a major knee injury and is "fine." Benjamin's injury was particularly worrisome because it's the same left knee in which he tore his ACL 2 years ago. It sounds like he dodged a repeat of that. We should get more details over the next 24 hours.

Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin is questionable to return to Sunday's game against the Saints with a left knee injury. The leg was bent awkwardly beneath him after making a catch in the 1st quarter. This is the same knee in which Benjamin tore his ACL back in 2015. Stay tuned for updates.

Update: Benjamin has been ruled out for the rest of the game.

11:09am EDT 9/24/17

Panthers QB Cam Newton (shoulder, ankle) is active for today’s game against the Saints. There was never any concern about his availability. Newton has struggled through 2 weeks, but this is a get-right spot against a bad New Orleans defense missing CBs Marshon Lattimore and Sterling Moore.

The Panthers listed QB Cam Newton (shoulder, ankle) as questionable for Week 3 after a limited week of practice. We've heard nothing to suggest that he's in any danger of missing Sunday's game against the Saints. Go ahead and keep him penciled into fantasy lineups. Just check back Sunday morning to make sure he's active.

The Panthers have placed TE Greg Olsen on IR. He underwent surgery on his broken foot on Tuesday. He's eligible to be activated from IR after 8 weeks, so his earliest possible return is Week 11. Olsen could still be a fantasy asset down the stretch but certainly isn't a must-hold.

Panthers TE Greg Olsen will undergo surgery on his broken right foot and is expected to miss 6-8 weeks, ESPN's Adam Schefter confirms. We'll see whether the Panthers stick Olsen on IR. If they do, he'll be out at least 8 weeks. If not, we'll take that to mean that the team expects him back in closer to 6 weeks. Either way, owners need to find a replacement at least through the end of October.

 
 
 

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