Curtis Samuel reportedly out Week 1 vs. Dallas Cowboys

(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) Curtis Samuel
(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) Curtis Samuel /

Carolina Panthers wide receiver, Curtis Samuel, will reportedly miss the season opener…

Curtis Samuel rebounded from an injury plagued rookie campaign putting together a solid training camp and preseason to earn a position on the Carolina Panthers 53-man roster. The former second-round selection from 2017 out of Ohio State, Samuel was competing with fellow speedster Damiere Byrd and both ultimately made the final roster, at least initially.

After registering 10 catches for 180 yards in limited action over four preseason games, big things are expected of Samuel this season. One piece of a wide receiver group expected to not only contribute down the field but by gaining yardage after the catch, Samuel was helping lead a new offensive approach under coordinator Norv Turner.

Unfortunately, it appears he will be sidelined to begin the 2018 regular season after reportedly undergoing a “procedure to fix an irregular heartbeat”. Although, the procedure was classified as minor, his return remains questionable as Samuel isn’t projected to be available in Week 1 against the Dallas Cowboys.

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If Samuel is inactive, the responsibilities of Damiere Byrd and rookie D.J. Moore will increase, especially on special teams. Offensively, Carolina will lean on Devin Funchess as the de facto number one receiver, new addition Torrey Smith, opposite and Jarius Wright in addition to a mix of Moore and Byrd. However, on kick and punt return – two areas Samuel has been utilized – coach Ron Rivera will likely rely on Byrd and sophomore running back Christian McCaffrey.

A heart issue is obviously significant and different from a hamstring, knee, ankle or any other injury which may limit a player’s ability to contribute on the field but doesn’t necessarily impact their long-term health. Samuel’s future needs to be the main concern right now to ensure playing a game doesn’t interfere with an otherwise preventable situation.

The official injury report won’t be released until later in the week, but for now it appears the Panthers will be without their speedy wide receiver. Facing a Dallas Cowboys team hoping to rebound from a 9-7 record one year ago, Carolina needs all hands on deck for a positive start to the 2018 season.

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Carolina and Dallas are set to kick off on September 9 at 4:25pm ET inside Bank of America Stadium.