Panthers May Be Without Valuable RB

Carolina seems likely to enter their post-bye game against Minnesota without the services of DeShaun Foster … again.

The Carolina Panthers remain without top backup running back DeShaun Foster, who is now going on his third week of missed practices.

Foster has a bruised knee, according to general manager Marty Hurney.

However, he missed all week leading up to the Detroit game and did not play in the game. Then he had all of last week off because of the bye week, but apparently that wasn't enough time off.

When the Panthers returned to practice on Monday to prepare for the Minnesota Vikings, Foster again sat out practice.

It's unclear if the injury is anyway related to the micro-fracture knee surgery he had that forced him to miss all of the 2002 season.

Foster has been a valuable change-of-pace back for the Panthers this season, averaging 74.6 all-purpose yards per game from scrimmage. The Panthers really struggled to run the ball against the Lions with Foster out of the lineup.

And while Carolina may be able to get by without him this week against Minnesota, they would certainly like to have him back for the following Sunday's crucial match-up with first place Tampa Bay.

Foster was unavailable for comment on Monday.

NOTES

  • Panthers head coach John Fox spent part of his bye weekend attending the Rolling Stones concert in Charlotte at the new downtown Bobcats Arena. Said Fox: "The show was good. I've been listening and watching them for about 40 years. It was my era."

  • The Panthers are no stranger to dealing with off-the-field problems, so Fox can sympathize with what the Minnesota Vikings have been going through the last couple of weeks with the "Love Boat" fiasco.

    "It's all hard," Fox said. "Everything about this profession is hard. Whether it's on the field or off the field, it's a tough business and it takes some tough people. There's not too much about it that's easy."


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