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Panthers send Pride to injured reserve, trade Little as they trim roster to 85

Today is the deadline to get to 85 members on the roster.

NFL: Carolina Panthers at Los Angeles Chargers Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

The Carolina Panthers have announced a number of roster moves as they meet the league deadline of today to slim their roster down to 85 players. Most notably, they have sent cornerback Troy Pride, Jr. to injured reserve and traded former second round pick offensive tackle Greg Little. The team has also cut fullback Rod Smith and waived center Mike Panasiuk and linebacker Nate Hall with injury designations.

Pride is, unsurprisingly, being given a second chance after having a rocky preseason. He was a fourth round pick last season who saw significant playing time in 2020 due to Donte Jackson extended absences. He and fellow 2020 draft pick Stantely Thomas Oliver have both shown degrees of promise, with Oliver having had the more consistent preseason this year.

Little’s trade is only surprising because the Panthers were able to get something for a player they likely would have released. Between injuries and poor play, the offensive tackle never made an impression with the Panthers despite the former general manager having traded up to acquire him in the second round. Little is on his way to the Miami Dolphins in exchange for their first seventh round pick in the 2022 draft.

August 24 (next Tuesday) is the deadline to further reduce the roster to 80 players. That is the last reduction before the team finalizes their 53-man roster by Tuesday, August 31.