The Carolina Panthers have activated three players off injured reserve ahead of their Sunday matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The moves were reported by NFL Network's Ian Rapoport on social media Saturday afternoon.
First, cornerback Jaycee Horn has been removed from IR after suffering a hamstring injury during the Panthers' first game. Despite his activation, his status remains in the air for Sunday's game. Horn, the Panthers' first-round pick (eighth overall) out of South Carolina in the 2021 NFL Draft, has played just sixteen games with the team thus far.
Next, third-year safety Jeremy Chinn was activated from IR on Saturday. Chinn hasn't played since injuring a quad muscle in Week 6. Before the injury, Chinn had seen a considerable drop off in playing time, appearing in 52.2 of the team's defensive snaps, nearly 40 percent less than what he played in 2022 (90.7%).
Lastly, defensive lineman Yetur Gross-Matos was removed from IR Saturday afternoon. Gross-Matos has also been out since Week 6, dealing with a hamstring injury.
Players on the 1-10 Panthers roster are playing for the future. The team entered the season with the fifth-oldest roster in the NFL, according to Jimmy Kempski of the Philly Voice. Young players will be eager to impress interim head coach Chris Tabor and volatile team owner David Tepper as the team heads into what will undoubtedly be an exciting offseason.
After firing first-year head coach Frank Reich in late November, rumors are swirling that the team might bring in beleaguered New Patriots head coach Bill Belichick to try to right the ship in 2024.