As they made a flurry of roster moves Tuesday, the best news for the Panthers is that wideout Brandon LaFell was not among them.
The Panthers placed two players on injured reserve. But LaFell, the teams third-leading receiver who injured his foot in Sundays loss at Kansas City, remained on the active roster.
Interim general manager Brandon Beane said LaFell has turf toe and is questionable for this weeks game against Atlanta. But Beane is hopeful LaFell will be able to play again this season.
Well have to see how he does this week, Beane said. A receiver has to be able to push off.
As expected, free safety Sherrod Martin went on IR after tearing two ligaments in his right knee against the Chiefs. Martin will undergo surgery and might have played his last game with the Panthers: He is eligible for free agency this offseason.
The Panthers also put defensive end Antwan Applewhite on IR and cut offensive lineman Jeremy Bridges three weeks after signing him.
Carolina promoted running back Armond Smith and center Thomas Austin from the practice squad to fill two of the roster spots, and signed defensive end Mario Addison from Washingtons practice squad.
Addison, undrafted out of Troy in 2011, has played in 14 games with three teams, including eight this season with Indianapolis and the Redskins. Addison played in the Redskins game against the Panthers last month but did not register a tackle.
Smith was signed to the practice squad after leading the Panthers with 150 rushing yards in the preseason. Smith will take a couple of Martins spots on special teams, and is expected to get a shot returning kicks against the Falcons.
Austin, the former Clemson center, was active for two games in October before returning to the practice squad.
Bridges, who was with the Panthers from 2006-08, began the year on IR with Arizona with torn ligaments in his left thumb before the Cardinals waived him in November. The Panthers signed him to add depth to an offensive line that has struggled since a season-ending foot injury to Pro Bowl center Ryan Kalil.
But Bridges was in poor football shape after being sidelined in Arizona, and was unable to supplant Garry Williams at right guard.
We brought Jeremy in to be a starter, Beane said. Unfortunately, it just didnt work.
Applewhite, a regular in the defensive rotation in 2011 in his first season in Charlotte, was a non-factor this season as he battled injuries. He missed seven games because of injuries, the past five with a pulled hamstring that was slow to heal.
Hes tried a couple times to come back and just didnt have a good feel, Beane said. We just reached a point where we didnt feel he could help us the rest of the year.
The Panthers added former North Carolina cornerback Kendric Burney and guard Dominic Alford to the practice squad.