Panthers defensive linemen Mario Addison and Star Lotulelei both suffered low ankle sprains in Carolina’s win against Dallas and their availability for next week’s game in New Orleans is uncertain.
Addison recently returned from a shoulder injury while Lotulelei has been bothered by a foot injury since last year. Panthers coach Ron Rivera said Lotulelei rolled his ankle on the first series of the game, but the good news was it’s not the same foot on which Lotulelei had surgery last winter.
The Panthers now have a minibye, where Rivera won’t have the players return to the stadium to begin work on the Saints until Tuesday. But the injured players will stick around and receive treatment.
“That'll be good,” Rivera said. “A few days without having to put pads on, a few days without having the stress to deal with in terms of game preparation will be good.”
With Charles Tillman still sidelined with a hyperextended knee, the Panthers brought in three veteran cornerbacks for workouts Friday. A league source said Cortland Finnegan was among those at the workout, along with Bradley Fletcher and former Panthers defensive back Robert McClain, according to a report.
Finnegan retired in March, but recently worked out for New England. The one-time Pro Bowler for Tennessee started 12 games for Miami last year but has a reputation as a dirty player.
Fletcher and McClain both were cut by the Patriots this season. McClain, the Panthers' seventh-round pick in 2010, was let go at the end of training camp, while Fletcher was released in October.
Tillman has missed the past two games and his status for next week's game at New Orleans is uncertain. Bene' Benwikere has filled in for Tillman, although the Panthers believe Benwikere fits best at nickel covering the slot receiver.