Former Utah Ute standout Kaelin Clay made national headlines in college in 2014 when, wide open and trotting into the end zone against Oregon, he dropped the ball on the 1-yard line.
But Clay has done nothing but prove he’s out for redemption since, and that includes a chance with the Carolina Panthers this season. The team announced Friday night that it signed Clay to a 1-year deal.
The move was in direct correlation with the loss of veteran receiver and returner Ted Ginn Jr. to the New Orleans Saints in free agency - but it should not preclude the Panthers picking up a speedy wide receiver and/or return man in the NFL draft later this month.
Clay was a standout sprinter in high school in California and was Utah’s go-to burner at receiver, while recovering from the viral drop with three returns-for-touchdown.
Clay is also getting a shot at redemption post-injury. He was drafted in the sixth round by Tampa Bay in 2015, but most recently was released by Baltimore after going on injure reserve with a foot injury. He doesn’t have any NFL receptions, but he did score an 82-yard punt return against the Browns while with Baltimore.