CHARLOTTE – The Panthers only had to use two combinations of starting offensive linemen in 17 games last season, but they will do so in two weeks this year.
Left guard Brady Christensen will miss at least the next four weeks after he was placed on injured reserve Wednesday.
Christensen played every snap of the opener, but suffered a biceps injury late in the opener in Atlanta.
The movements create a place in the squad but also a question.
Freshman Chandler Zavala started at right guard last week, but spent most of his college career at left at NC State (including time alongside now teammate Ikem Ekwonu).
So moving him seems intuitive, but they have options, including Cade Mays, Calvin Throckmorton and Nash Jensen, while they wait for Austin Corbett to return from the physically unable to perform list.
Also on Wednesday, the Panthers placed cornerback Stantley Thomas-Oliver on practice squad injured reserve (hamstring), released practice squad running back Spencer Brown and signed wide receiver Michael Strachan and running back Tarik Cohen to the practice team.
Cohen hasn’t played in the league the last two years due to injuries, but he made the Pro Bowl and earned All-Pro honors as a return specialist during his time with the Bears.
The Bunn, North Carolina, native played at North Carolina A&T and was a fourth-round pick in 2017.
The 6-foot-5, 225-pound Strachan was a seventh-round pick of the Colts in 2021 out of Division II Charleston (WV). That year he ran a 4.54-second 40 at the combine, an intriguing combination of size and speed. He caught five passes for 85 yards in parts of two seasons with the Colts while working under now-Panthers head coach Frank Reich.
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