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March 28, 2012

Panthers looking for linebacker depth


Though he's received positive reports on the rehab progress of starting linebackers Thomas Davis and Jon Beason, Ron Rivera said the Panthers still will consider adding depth at linebacker.

Davis is recovering from his third ACL surgery in two years, and is attempting to become the first player to return from three ACL reconstructions on the same knee.

Beason underwent surgery in September after tearing his Achilles tendon.

Also, the Panthers lost Dan Connor to Dallas in free agency, and are not expected to re-sign free agent Jordan Senn.

They signed former Minnesota linebacker Kenny Onatolu, a backup and special teams player with the Vikings, to a 3-year deal. But Rivera indicated the Panthers could use at least one other linebacker.

“We need to seriously look at it, whether it is through the draft or once we finish the draft and make decisions on other players out there that are still free agents,” Rivera said. “Adding depth would be a huge thing and it is most certainly something we've got to look at as we go forward once we get past the draft.”

Rivera said Davis and Beason both have cleared to start running, but did not give a timetable for when they would begin football activities.

“Things are looking very good (with Davis). We got a good report from our trainer and our doctors, as is Jon Beason with the Achilles tendon. He's come along very well,” Rivera said. “They both have been cleared to start running, so that's a huge plus for us defensively.”

Without Beason and Davis, the Panthers finished 28th in the league in yards allowed.

--Joseph Person

Posted by Observer Sports on March 28, 2012 at 12:22 PM | Permalink


I would love for the Panthers to look at Melvin Ingram, S C defensive end

Posted by: Dennis Easterling | Mar 28, 2012 12:53:48 PM

why are we not bringing back jordan senn?

Posted by: ryan o | Mar 28, 2012 12:54:45 PM

Need to keep Senn here....the guy is strong on special teams and showed he is very capable at LB. How many 10+ tackle games did he have....3?

Posted by: David Crabb | Mar 28, 2012 1:00:25 PM

Frank, what in the world are you talking about in regards to Beason? He's been a stud every year he's been here and last year was his only injury issue.

Posted by: David | Mar 28, 2012 3:19:49 PM

IMO, the Panthers will never draft a DT with the #9 pick. A trade down to the mid
teens is another story, but with Jerel Worthy of Michigan State in for a visit, it tells me that our pick in the 2nd round is a more likely scenerio for the DT slot.

Posted by: Mo | Mar 28, 2012 3:22:34 PM

Bring back Nic Harris.

Posted by: SCB | Mar 28, 2012 4:16:25 PM

London Fletcher one year deal!

Posted by: joe cool | Mar 28, 2012 4:25:49 PM

I would strongly consider drafting that stud linebacker from Boston College @ #9. Von Miller went #2 last year and Kuchley (spelling?) is probably as good and appears to be a sure thing. Drafting a tackle @ #9 would be a huge mistake IMHO.

Posted by: SC Ken | Mar 28, 2012 5:07:20 PM

Beason played the entire 2-14 2010 season healthy but Clausen will get the blame for the defense then?

Idiot hicks know nothing about the game.

Posted by: ron from mighty pitt | Mar 28, 2012 5:27:04 PM

Im pretty sure I spotted Clausen working drive-thru at wendy's last week, and yes, I blame him for the jr. bacon cheeseburger that I ordered not being in the bag when I got home!!! Missing open receivers by 10 yards or more is one thing, but depriving me of dollar menu goodies is totally unacceptable!!!

Also, I agree with Mo about 2nd round DT seems to be a loaded position in this years draft

Posted by: jason wilmington | Mar 28, 2012 7:02:23 PM

Terrell Manning, N.C. State.

Posted by: wolfpackpanther | Mar 28, 2012 8:57:08 PM

hey ron from pitt, get off clausen jock strap, you know nothing about that season to quote, the defense led by beason kept us in most games that year, clausen led the worst offense in panthers history, and calling us hicks is old, get new material

Posted by: panthernation | Mar 28, 2012 9:17:39 PM

No Senn please unless its for special teams. Was great in run support but his coverage was poor.

Posted by: dust | Mar 29, 2012 12:18:55 AM

i think we should look at David Hawthourne from Seattle, he can play all 3 linebacker spots and would allow TD to just come in on situational plays

Posted by: ray | Mar 29, 2012 11:07:30 AM

I agree, SC Ken !

Posted by: nasty704 | Mar 29, 2012 1:11:25 PM

Are we seriously bashing a LB that is highly regarding as one of the Top 5 in the NFL? If you want to know why our defense was pitiful in 2010, look no further than our secondary. 2010 was before the "rebirth" of Gamble. Or you can look at the D-Line where we were starting incredible talent like Tyler Brayton. Beason has been a force since he entered the league. The man needs some additional talent around him. You give me a healthy Beason-Davis-Anderson linebacking corps, and I will take on any other LB group in the league.

Posted by: AppGrad04 | Mar 29, 2012 2:15:46 PM

Losing Beason in Week 1 was even worse for our defense than the lack of beef in the middle at DT. Dan Connor was good, but he was no Beason. Achilles can take a year to heal properly, I hope they bring him back very slowly in training camp, don't want a repeat of the Davis situation.

Posted by: TommyBoy | Mar 29, 2012 6:33:24 PM

Bring back Nic Harris!!!! He is in Beast mode right now and ready to play and contribute for any team!!!!

Posted by: Rufus Roosevelt | May 15, 2012 3:55:12 PM

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