Tiquan Underwood joins Panthers

Updated: March 21, 2014, 9:01 PM ET
By David Newton | ESPN.com

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The Carolina Panthers on Friday reached a two-year deal with free-agent receiver Tiquan Underwood, the team announced, and also signed free-agent cornerback Antoine Cason and former Vikings backup quarterback Joe Webb to one-year deals.

The deals come a day after Carolina signed former Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Jerricho Cotchery.

The Panthers are looking to replace their top four receivers from last season. Steve Smith was released, and Brandon LaFell, Ted Ginn Jr. and Domenik Hixon were lost in free agency.

Underwood likely will compete for the third receiver spot and on special teams as a kick returner. A seventh-round draft pick by Jacksonville in 2009, Underwood caught a career-high 24 passes for 440 yards for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last season.

Cason was a first-round pick in 2008 by the San Diego Chargers. He worked with Carolina coach Ron Rivera and secondary coach Steve Wilks when both were in San Diego. He started 45 games for the Chargers between 2010 and 2012 and has 14 career interceptions.

Cason (6-foot-1, 195 pounds) could be the bigger cornerback the Panthers have been looking for to replace Captain Munnerlyn, who signed with Minnesota.

Webb played both quarterback and wide receiver in his four seasons with the Vikings, but will be solely a quarterback with the Panthers. He has completed 88-of-152 passes for 853 yards and three touchdowns and five interceptions over his career.

Rivera said in a news release that Webb had a strong workout Friday and is "a young player who intrigues us and has a similar skill set to Cam [Newton]."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

David Newton | email

ESPN Carolina Panthers reporter

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