Carolina Panthers coach Ron Rivera will repeat himself until it’s clear.
He has no update on the health of linebacker Luke Kuechly, who is in the concussion protocol after a scary collision last Thursday night against the New Orleans Saints.
“No update. No update,” he said Thursday, shaking his head.
Kuechly was present briefly in the locker room after practice before stepping out when he saw media members enter. Players in the concussion protocol are not available for interviews.
Also absent from Thursday’s practice was safety Tre Boston, who tweaked his ankle at the end of a practice this week after stepping on a player’s cleat by accident, Rivera said. He was listed as “did not participate” in Thursday’s practice.
The Panthers saw progress from cornerback Leonard Johnson, who was limited in practice after not participating on Wednesday. He suffered a chest injury that required immediate hospitalization last Thursday night.
“It felt really good to get out there. I’m still in a lot of pain, though,” Johnson said Thursday. “Breathing, still have a little AC (joint) sprain. Bunch of nagging little things. ... It’s pain in the sternum and in the ribcage. But I should be all right.
“I mean, I want to play. So if I’m able to play, I’m going to get out and play.”
Johnson said he was preparing to travel with the team. Rivera said he does not yet have the list of players cleared for the 10-day trip to Oakland and Seattle, after mentioning on Wednesday that he would not allow those with extended injuries to travel.
Linebacker A.J. Klein (Kuechly’s backup) is fully active in practice, though still in the concussion protocol (which has practice participation as a step). Safety Colin Jones (concussion), center Gino Gradkowksi (knee) and tackle Donald Hawkins (illness) all participated fully as well.
Klein was also not available to the media on Thursday.
Left tackle Michael Oher (concussion), defensive end Mario Addison (ankle), corner Zack Sanchez (groin) and center Ryan Kalil (shoulder) were all absent from practice as well.