Considering they’re playing two games during a six-day span 16 weeks into the season, the Carolina Panthers are relatively healthy for Saturday’s NFC South matchup with the Atlanta Falcons.
The Panthers had five players who sat out Wednesday’s practice and three others who were limited, but coach Ron Rivera said the only one he’s concerned with is backup defensive end Ryan Delaire, who injured his knee during Monday’s win at Washington.
Pro Bowl tight end Greg Olsen was inside the stadium during practice with a sore elbow. Olsen has played in 156 consecutive regular-season games, and Rivera expects that streak to continue.
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“It’s sore and we want him to get as much treatment as possible, so we kept him inside,” Rivera said. “Plus, he needs a little bit of rest as well (as a) veteran guy. But I have no concern.”
Rivera is optimistic defensive end Charles Johnson can return from a hamstring injury that has sidelined him two games. Rivera said Johnson looked good working out on the side Wednesday.
Quarterback Cam Newton, who has a sore throwing shoulder, is following the same routine as he did last week before the Washington trip. Newton did not throw during Wednesday’s practice, but his workload will increase as the week goes on.