Panthers: unfamiliar and unproven faces at RB
DeAngelo Williams left last week’s game against Baltimore with an ankle injury and he is now in a hard cast. Jonathan Stewart sprained his knee in Week 3 and Ron Rivera expects him to be out this week again. The pair may not have been piling up many yards, but did combined to force 21 missed tackles.
Rivera has named undrafted free agent Darrin Reaves as the starter this week against the Bears. He anticipates a rotation between Reaves, Fozzy Whitaker (just recovered from an injury of his own), and recently-signed veteran Chris Ogbonnaya. Getting the run game going will be tough sledding.
Reaves played 65% of the offensive snaps last week, posted a -3.7 overall grade and yielded a hurry in pass protection.
In 171 snaps with the Chargers and Browns in 2013, Whittaker recorded a -2.7 overall grade forcing only seven missed tackles across 49 touches. He had 21 receptions while averaging 8 YAC per reception, but dropped five balls.
Ogbonnaya, also on the Browns in 2013, produced 4.9 YPC with 107 yards after contact, nine missed tackles, and 48 catches while playing 47.5% of snaps. However he dropped seven balls, and allowed 14 pressures in 152 pass block snaps.