After being traded to the New York Jets for a conditional 7th round draft pick, Jeff Otah failed the physical. That nixed the trade of course, and the Panthers made their parting official today by releasing the often-injured veteran.
Otah, who plans on continuing his career, will continue to work out and try to strengthen his knee, his agent said.
He was the 19th overall pick of the 2008 draft but has missed 31 of his last 35 games and ended each of his past three seasons on Injured Reserve. His knee may be too damaged for him to absorb the abuse it gets in a long 16-game season plus (hopefully) the playoffs.
In the meantime, Byron Bell filled the role last season and is expected to start again this season. Panthers GM Marty Hurney says he likes the young talent remaining on the roster at the position and likes the depth with Bruce Campbell and Garry Williams.
The organization picked up the vacant roster spot with CB Nate Ness. Ness has played for several different teams and is mainly a special teams guy, but in the little bit that I’ve seen him play, he can make some plays. He seems to have a nose for the football. Keep an eye on this guy; he might stick in Charlotte.