Roster Move Friday

Welcome to “Roster Move Friday”! The segment where we recap all of the roster moves that the Panthers make over the course of the week. Doesn’t matter if it’s a trade, a practice squad signing or someone going on IR, if it’s a roster move, we don’t discriminate.

9/11/17 — Panthers reach injury settlements with Brenton Bersin, Gino Gradkowski, Chris Scott & L.J. McCray. All players released/waived.

The Panthers filled that IR list up in the preseason. Pretty much anyone that was injured, but wasn’t a true threat to make the team was put on IR for the season. I guess that’s pretty common practice, but either way, that run for these four was short lived. Shouts to Chris Scott and Brenton Bersin real quick for their service. They did enough to be memorable, but not enough for us to be that sad about them leaving. Best of luck to them in their future endeavors.

9/13/17 — Panthers claim Ladarius Gunter from the Packers, waive Harrison Butker.

A big point of contention among the fan base was that the Panthers broke training camp with two kickers on the final 53 man roster. Certainly that’s not common practice in today’s NFL, but Hurney tried to get get a trade return for one of Butker or Gano during a time where a couple teams had some dicey kicking situations. It didn’t work out, no harm no foul.

Gunter is a solid acquisition when you consider the quality of player usually available on the waiver wire. Gunter has some legit game tape unlike most guys floating out there making him much more of a known commodity and it’s a bonus that he plays a position the Panthers could use quality depth at. Gunter should also be an instant contributor to special teams and teams can always use guys that can execute there.

9/14/17 — Harrison Butker added to practice squad. Eric Crume waived.

Plenty of fans were concerned that the rookie kicker would get claimed by someone if he were to get waived, which is why most wanted the Panthers to part with Gano instead. I think Hurney played this one perfectly though and passed Butker through waivers after a couple kicker needy teams claimed other players to fill that void. Butker was always destined to return to the practice squad if he cleared waivers. The hope will be for him to assume full time kicking duties next season once Gano becomes a free agent.

9/14/17 — Panthers claim John Theus from the 49ers, place Cole Luke on IR.

Hurney making moves! I don’t know anything about Theus other than he was a 5th round pick for San Francisco back in 2016 and he plays offensive tackle. To be honest, that’s fine with me. You can NEVER have enough depth a tackle and I like grabbing guys that were recent draft picks and stashing them on the roster. Our coaching staff is proven and has had success developing reclamation projects. Hoping Theus can fill in as productive depth behind Kalil, Williams, etc.

Cole Luke going to IR definitely helps validate the Gunter claim. Luke was the only UDFA to crack the Carolina 53, but nursed an ankle injury ever since the final preseason game. I guess Luke could theoretically be designated for return, but it’s unlikely as he isn’t as talented as the guy they replaced him with. The NFL is tough.

9/15/17 — Bucky Hodges added to practice squad, Keyarris Garrett waived.

This is a move that has me excited! I have been calling for the Panthers to draft a young developmental tight end for a couple of years now and I know I’m not the only one. It’s no secret that beyond Greg Olsen, Carolina doesn’t have an adequate receiving threat at tight end. Not sure Bucky will be that guy, but he’s definitely got the skill set to develop into a productive second or third option. He’s not on the active roster so I don’t expect to see Hodges anytime soon, but I like that there is at least a young piece hanging around.

Keyarris Garrett came in with some hype, but ultimately, he didn’t amount to much.

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