The Panthers are trading one tight end from injured reserve for another with today’s transactions. Carolina has opted to send tight end Ian Thomas to IR as he recovers from a calf injury, according to Panthers staff writer Darin Gantt. Reinforcements will arrive swiftly, though, as tight end Stephen Sullivan has been activated off of IR in Thomas’ place.
Injuries are working their way through the roster in Carolina this week. Running back Miles Sanders and safeties Vonn Bell and Xavier Woods may lead the headlines as inactives, but backup tight end Giovanni Ricci has also been ruled out for tomorrow’s game with a shoulder injury, leaving just Hayden Hurst and Tommy Tremble atop the depth chart.
Sullivan will be making his 2023 season-debut his weekend after being placed on IR to start the year. Through three years in the NFL, Sullivan has only reeled in two catches for 46 yards, but he’ll provide some important depth this Sunday.
In addition to the above two moves, the Panthers will be calling up safety Matthias Farley and offensive lineman Justin McCray from the practice squad as standard gameday elevations. With Bell out as a starter, Farley is not only expected to play, but he is also expected to make his first start since 2020. McCray may not get significant playing time, but he will provide some serious depth off the bench as the team prepares to deal with the neck injury of Chandler Zavala, another inactive starter.