Carolina Panthers

Panthers sign veteran punter Mike Scifres

Former San Diego Chargers punter Mike Scifres was signed by the Carolina Panthers Tuesday.
Former San Diego Chargers punter Mike Scifres was signed by the Carolina Panthers Tuesday. AP

Still searching for a replacement for Brad Nortman, the Carolina Panthers signed veteran punter Mike Scifres on Tuesday.

Carolina went into organized team activities with Swayze Waters and Michael Palardy as its two punters, hoping that one would win the job in training camp. But both have been inconsistent during these three weeks, and the Panthers cut Palardy to make room for Scifres, who signed a one-year deal.

Waters, a former Canadian Football League special teams player of the year, has never punted in the NFL after coming out of Alabama-Birmingham in 2009.

Scifres spent his entire 13-year career with the Chargers before San Diego released him in April in favor of a drafted rookie. He was picked to the franchise’s 50th anniversary team, but he was set to cost $4.2 million against the Chargers’ cap in 2016 and was coming off a lackluster 2015 season.

Scifres, 35, has been consistent though not outstanding in his long career. He has a gross average of 45.2 yards per punt in his 13 years.

Nortman had an identical gross punting average during his four seasons in Carolina. A former sixth-round pick, Nortman opted to sign a four-year deal in Jacksonville worth $8.8 million when Carolina wasn’t willing to pay that much.

Jonathan Jones: 704-358-5323, @jjones9

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