The Carolina Panthers continue to roll through the 2015 season by beating the Atlanta Falcons by 38 points, the largest margin of victory this year for the Panthers. They may have suffered a signficant loss in Week 14 to their secondary though with cornerback Bene Benwikere suffered a fractured leg, according to head coach Ron Rivera.
This injury to Benwikere could be bad for this defense. The Panthers' secondary was already without starting cornerback Charles Tillman for the past four weeks due to a knee injury so they were already lacking depth. The team had to sign Cortland Finnegan prior to the New Orleans Saints game and he helped with this while Benwikere replaced Tillman on the outside.
Tillman was practicing before the Falcons game on a limited basis so he could be possibly returning soon. If not the team will look to Finnegan to start on the outside and will go back to Colin Jones as the nickelback. This is not ideal though as Jones struggled at the position and was one of the reasons the Panthers went out and signed Finnegan.
Benwikere was drafted in the fifth round in 2014 and played a key role down the stretch last year starting opposite Josh Norman. This year though the team was able to move him inside to the nickel position, where he was playing very well, due to the addition of Tillman.
This injury will most likely cost Benwikere the rest of the season and the team will have to put him on injured reserve. This type of injury there could be a possibility of him returning before the end of the season, if the Panthers were to make the Super Bowl, but the team already used their injured reserve with designation to return on defensive end Charles Johnson.
The Panthers will most likely now be on the lookout for another cornerback and the team may look at adding one of the two other cornerbacks the team worked out when they worked out Finnegan. The team had Bradley Fletcher and Robert McClain in for tryouts during Thanksgiving weekend and one of these two could be a replacement.