The Carolina Panthers on Monday announced that eight players have been placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list following the team’s bye week. Joining defensive end Yetur Gross-Matos and practice squad defensive tackle Bruce Hector, who were led on the list last week, are five starters.
Starters DJ Moore, Curtis Samuel, Derrick Brown, Zach Kerr, and Shaq Thompson were added to the list; as well as punter Michael Palardy who is currently on injured reserve. Practice squad wide receiver Ishmael Hyman will go on practice squad/COVID-19.
The new additions give the Panthers 10 players that have hit the COVID-19 lists in the last week. Teams may not disclose whether a player himself has tested positive or whether he is quarantining as the result of close contact with someone who has tested positive. The distinction between the two statuses determines the length of time the players will be unavailable. If those players are still out for the remainder of the week, the Panthers will be very short staffed when they host the Denver Broncos on Sunday. The Broncos recently had their own COVID-19 debacle which left them without a quarterback in their Week 12 contest against the New Orleans Saints.
Running back Christian McCaffrey is expected to be back in the lineup on Sunday but the Panthers would be missing roughly 46% of the team’s receiving yards if Moore and Samuel are out. The fallout extends to the defensive side of the ball as well; rookie Bravvion Roy is the only defensive tackle on the active roster at this moment.