The NFL are gifted at taking a seemingly simply concept, changing things up at the last minute, and muddying the water. Such is the case today as the NFL and NFLPA agreed today to make a few small moves today, the biggest of which is the decision to allow teams to designate one player that will be on IR for all intents and purposes. However, they must hit IR during the season; can return to practice after six weeks, and play in a game after eight weeks. This is a well thought out move that helps mitigate injuries to critical players, and should increase parity.
On the surface it looks like the Panthers have no stake in the move; after all, the likes of Brandon Hogan, Nate Ness, and Lee Ziemba were all placed on IR this preseason. Like all things though, there'e more to it– as the rule was just instated, teams are allowed to revert a player back from IR to the roster, then place them on IR after the cut down to 53. Theoretically the Panthers could do this will Brandon Hogan, but will they?
More after the jump
Truthfully it's hard to know. At this point Brandon Hogan has been unable to get healthy in over a year, so what will 8 more weeks do? That being said, the option is there, and the potential is there for the Panthers to go undermanned at CB, perhaps keeping an extra safety as a swing DB in the hopes Hogan can be ready by mid-season.
We'll know tomorrow, but you hear that Hogan had been made active then you'll know what's happening.