Quarterback Cam Newton of the Carolina Panthers will be without another receiver this season as bad news has arrived. Recent reports indicate that wide receiver Curtis Samuel is officially done for this NFL season. The Panthers rookie sustained an injury during the team’s Monday Night Football game against the Miami Dolphins.
As reported by ESPN‘s David Newton on Tuesday night, Samuel was injured during Monday night’s win over the Dolphins. During the game, he suffered a left ankle injury and it was later determined that he had ligament damage. The team reported he would miss the rest of the season and will also have surgery at some point to repair the damage.
Samuel had other injuries towards the start of the season including a problem with his hamstring and then his right ankle. He was a second-round pick from Ohio State. On Monday’s game, he ended up with five receptions for 45 yards against the Dolphins. For his season stats before the game, he’d tallied just 10 catches and 70 yards as a member of the Panthers.
The unfortunate news arrives as Cam Newton’s top receiver was traded just before the NFL trade deadline. The Panthers sent Kelvin Benjamin to the Buffalo Bills in exchange for third and seventh-round draft picks in 2018. In addition, Greg Olsen was injured earlier this season. However, other players have stepped up to fill the void left by Benjamin and Olsen’s injury. That includes Devin Funches who is the team’s leading receiver with 535 yards and five touchdowns on 43 catches. One of those touchdowns came in last night’s game.
Others stepping up will be the case with the latest void left. It was noted that Kaelin Clay, Russell Shepard, and running back Christian McCaffrey would make up a committee of players to make up for Samuel’s absence on the roster. The other good news appears to be that Greg Olsen will be back after this coming bye week and on the field for the team’s November 26 game against the New York Jets.
Offensive coordinator Mike Shula spoke of the team’s resilience despite Samuel being injured.
“One of the best things that happened after Curtis [went out] was we didn’t feel we missed a beat. It was guys coming in and doing their job and knowing their assignments.”
As of this report, Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers are 7-3 for the season and in second place in the NFC South behind the New Orleans Saints (7-2). If the NFL Playoffs started today, the Panthers would be in as one of the top six teams in the NFC with the fifth-best record.
[Featured Image by Bob Leverone/AP Images]