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Panthers again scrambling for DT help

9/21/2009



Posted by ESPN.com’s Pat Yasinskas

I just got back home from Atlanta and am going through what’s come out of Monday’s NFC South news conferences and we’ll deal with the injuries first.

Carolina defensive tackle Louis Leonard has a broken ankle. Coach John Fox wouldn’t say if Leonard will be placed on the injured reserve list, but that’s what’s going to happen. You can also bet that the Panthers will sign another defensive tackle because they lack depth at this spot after a series of injuries.

It started on the first day of training camp when Maake Kemoeatu went down with a season-ending injury and that instantly put the Panthers into a crisis situation -- that could have been avoided with a little foresight.

Kemoeatu and Damione Lewis were the only established defensive tackles on the roster entering the preseason and the Panthers should at least had one more option there. But they didn’t. They started second-year pro Nick Hayden in the opener, but he missed Sunday’s game with a toe injury.

At the moment, Lewis and Ra’Shon “Sunny’’ Harris are the only healthy defensive tackles on the roster.