Kelvin Benjamin sustained a left knee sprain on Wednesday in the joint practice session with Miami Dolphins. He will undergo MRI, Carolina Panthers’ head coach Ron Rivera clarified.
Benjamin went down trying to make a cut against Miami’s defensive back Don Jones. There wasn’t any contact in the play.
The latest update reveals that Benjamin tore his ACL. He may miss the coming 2015 season.
Benjamin stayed on the ground for a while and then was carted off.
Quarterback Cam Newton was there to assist his teammate onto the cart before practice resumed once more.
Benjamin, injury and its effect
“He just went to plant and make a swim move, and without any contact just went down,” Rivera said. “It’s unfortunate. It’s one of those things that could have happened in any drill.”
Benjamin was a first round draft pick of the Carolina last season, and led them in receptions with a stellar show of with 73 for 1,008 yards and nine touchdowns in the regular season.
Rivera also clarified Benjamin’s injury won’t change the complexion and tactics of his team’s offense.
“It’s not going to change the complexion of what we want to do or how we’re going to do it,” Rivera said. “It’s just going to change who’s going to do it.”
Young guys like Devin Funchess could be Benjamin’s replacement, according to the Panthers’ coach.
Rivera describes Benjamin’s condition in the training camp to be in “tremendous shape,” and the receiver was performing well, too.
The team has already lost a wide receiver, Stephen Hill, earlier in the first week of the training camp due to a torn ACL.
Another candidate who is likely to replace Benjamin is Jarrett Boykin, who was acquired from Green Bay this offseason as a free agent.
“Some guys have just got to step up and take advantage of the opportunity, and hopefully we’ll get some positive news later today,” Rivera said.