NFC South: Phillip Dillard

We told you earlier the Tampa Bay Buccaneers signed seven players to “futures’’ contracts. The Carolina Panthers and Atlanta Falcons also have done a little bit of that.

The Panthers signed offensive lineman Roger Allen, linebacker Phillip Dillard, tight end Greg Smith and cornerback Reggie Sullivan to one-year deals.

The Falcons apparently are trying to build depth on their special teams. They have signed punter/kicker Corey Adams and long-snapper Scott Albritton to futures contracts.

Panthers activate Brandon Hogan

November, 8, 2011
Lots of Carolina fans have been asking in recent weeks what the Panthers would do with rookie cornerback Brandon Hogan, who has been on the physically unable to perform list since the start of the season.

Well, we got the answer Tuesday. The Panthers activated Hogan to the 53-man roster. He could be active as soon as Sunday.

But I wouldn’t get too carried away and think Hogan is going to step in and immediately solve all of Carolina’s defensive problems. He’s a fourth-round draft pick coming off a major injury.

The Panthers have decent starters in Chris Gamble and Captain Munnerlyn. Nickelback is a bit of a question, and I think Hogan has a chance to gradually work himself into that spot as the season goes on.

The Panthers made several other roster moves. They also activated defensive end Thomas Keiser from their practice squad to the 53-man roster. The Panthers placed linebacker Thomas Williams on injured reserve and released defensive tackle Ron Fields.

Carolina also signed defensive tackle Jason Shirley and linebacker Phillip Dillard to the practice squad. Linebacker Lawrence Wilson, who was charged with marijuana possession during the bye week, was released from the practice squad.