Carolina Panthers rookie Dan Connor will miss the rest of the season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee.
Connor, who hurt the knee in Sunday's 20-10 loss at Minnesota, had an MRI Monday morning when the team returned to Charlotte.
He had been carted to the locker room from the sideline Sunday with his leg heavily wrapped.
Connor, a third-round draft pick, was an All-American linebacker at Penn State who had been contributing to the Panthers on special teams.
The Panthers haven't announced a corresponding roster move, but could bring back linebacker/special teamer Donte' Curry, who was released last week to make room for Steve Smith's return.
Center Ryan Kalil said the loud crowd in the Metrodome was a major reason the Panthers were whistled for six false-start penalties.
He said he often couldn't hear quarterback Jake Delhomme calling signals, causing him to snap the ball after the rest of the offensive line had moved.
“Most of (the penalties) were my fault,” said Kalil, a second-year player who's in his first season as a starter. “I know it looked like guys were jumping offside, but I was having a hard time hearing (Delhomme). That's not an excuse, but it's something I've got to fix and remedy.”
Three of the false starts came with the Panthers in a shotgun offense, which means Delhomme was farther away from center. Kalil said he doesn't have much experience in the shotgun.
Coach John Fox said receiver/returner Ryne Robinson, who hasn't played yet because of a knee injury, will practice Wednesday and is day-to-day.
Fox didn't know if Robinson would return kickoffs immediately when he returns.
Rookie Jonathan Stewart, who averaged 29.2 yards per return against the Vikings (including an 87-yarder that was nullified by a penalty), has been filling in for Robinson, who averaged 23 yards last season. “Until he's back, I can't really think about what-ifs,” Fox said.
Fox said he thought the Panthers had 12 players on the field when he called timeout before a fourth-quarter Vikings field-goal attempt that was blocked by Carolina's Chris Harris.
Fox thought Charles Johnson hadn't come off the field after being substituted for by Na'il Diggs. As it turns out, Diggs wasn't on the field.
“Rather than risk a penalty, I called timeout,” said Fox.
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