Panthers To Place CB Jaycee Horn On IR

SEPTEMBER 15: The Panthers will place Horn on IR,’s Ian Rapoport reports. While Horn would be eligible to return by Week 6, Rapoport adds a comeback will likely not be in the cards until at least the season’s second-half. The injury is not, however, believed to be season-ending. This hiatus will push Horn’s games-missed number past 20 over the course of his young career.

SEPTEMBER 13: Injuries have dogged Jaycee Horn throughout his NFL career. Another one has cropped up, and Frank Reich confirmed Wednesday the former top-10 pick will miss a significant chunk of the season.

Horn suffered a hamstring injury against the Falcons in Week 1, and Reich indicated (via The Athletic’s Joe Person) surgery is in play. Carolina’s top cornerback is seeking a second opinion. As should be expected, Horn is a candidate to land on injured reserve. The Panthers already moved one starter — left guard Brady Christensento IR on Wednesday.

At the very least, Horn will miss multiple games, per ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler. The South Carolina alum has already missed 18 contests as a pro. A broken foot derailed Horn’s rookie season, and he sustained multiple injuries — including a broken wrist — in 2022. Horn missed offseason time due to an ankle injury. The Panthers are planning to add a cornerback, Person tweets. Christensen’s IR move leaves their roster at 52 players.

The Panthers have seen flashes from Horn, and they protected him as trade interest emerged following Matt Rhule‘s October 2022 firing. But the team also passed on two future All-Pro defenders — Patrick Surtain, Micah Parsons — in that 2021 draft. The team chose Horn eighth overall, making him the first corner off the board that year. The Broncos chose Surtain, a 2022 first-team All-Pro, at No. 9. Parsons went 12th overall.

Horn, 24, made it through 20 defensive snaps before going down in Week 1. The 6-foot-1 cover man remains Carolina’s centerpiece corner, though the team has Donte Jackson signed to a three-year, $35.18MM deal. Carolina added slot defender Troy Hill late in the summer and acquired former Jaguars top-10 draftee C.J. Henderson shortly after losing Horn two years ago. Henderson, however, has not played particularly well since coming to Charlotte. The Panthers passed on his fifth-year option in May.

Horn’s rookie contract runs through 2024, though it can be extended through 2025 via the fifth-year option. The run of injuries Horn has encountered will complicate Carolina’s decision regarding his fifth-year option; that call is due in May 2024.

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