The Carolina Panthers placed veteran kicker Graham Gano on injured reserve Friday, ending his season before it starts.
The 32-year-old 10-year veteran has kicked for the Panthers the last seven seasons, including a Pro Bowl year in 2017.
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He has struggled through the preseason with a lingering knee injury on his plant leg that forced him to miss the final four games of the 2018 regular season.
Panthers GM: ‘Tough decisions’
"Both Graham and the team were optimistic throughout this process that his leg would improve enough to allow him to kick," general manager Marty Hurney said in a statement. "Unfortunately, Graham still had pain in his plant leg each time he tried to resume kicking. These are tough decisions, and we discussed all options, but ultimately we decided to place Graham on injured reserve today."
Undrafted rookie Joey Slye will take Gano’s place after hitting 7-of-8 field goal attempts during the preseason, including three from at least 50 yards. His missed field goal was due to a block.
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