Panthers’ Bruce Campbell could to miss season with looming shoulder surgery
Rivera considered the injury serious and seemed to agree with the several that are describing the surgery as season-ending for Campbell. However, up to this point, the Panthers haven’t even made a decision on if they'll place Campbell on injured reserve.
“Probably,” Rivera said Monday when asked if Campbell could be done for the year. “But we won't know until he has the surgery just what exactly it is or how bad it is.”
Campbell suffered the shoulder injury during the Panthers’ preseason win over the Chicago Bears on Friday.
The 25-year-old originally arrived in Carolina last March, via a trade with the Oakland Raiders, and appeared in five games for the Panthers in the 2012 season.
If Campbell misses time this season, it will be another huge blow to an already depleted offensive line that just keeps on getting thinner as training camp progresses. The Panthers seem to have a depth issue across the offensive line ever since they released veteran right guard Geoff Hangartner during the first week of camp. Rookie guard Edmund Kugbila too can’t seem to stay healthy. It has forced the Panthers to try various combinations on the offensive line, and the loss of Campbell can only make that situation worse.
Heading into his second season with the Panthers, Campbell was listed as the team’s backup at left tackle, with no one behind him in camp having any measurable experience for the job.
According to reports, the Panthers had been considering Nate Chandler at offensive tackle but the results have been far from desirable so far. That could partly be since Chandler has little history playing the position at a competitive level. Although Chandler started off on the offensive line as a freshman, he soon switched tight end at UCLA, before again moving over the defensive line in his junior year. Most recently, Chandler served as a backup defensive tackle for the Panthers last season. There is also right tackle Byron Bell, but he too just isn’t as impressive.
However, Rivera indicated that the Panthers aren’t immediately adding a free agent replacement for Campbell, saying that right guard Garry Williams could fill in at tackle if the need arises.