The Carolina Panthers relocated to a different state Saturday, but their fans remained in the same state of pandemonium. Unfortunately, the swarm of onlookers included one of their own.




Rookie running back Tyler Gaffney watched the first training camp practice from the sideline at Wofford College with the aid of crutches, necessitated by a season-ending knee injury suffered at Fan Fest in Charlotte on Friday night.


"It happened on a running play – my only running play," explained Gaffney, who tore his left lateral meniscus on a non-contact play. "It just felt loose. It hurt a little bit, but nothing that bad. I've hurt worse. I wasn't too concerned."


The concern obviously grew when an MRI revealed the extent of the damage. With the Panthers' sixth-round draft choice facing surgery and a season on injured reserve – and with running back Jonathan Stewart nursing a hamstring injury – head coach Ron Rivera said the Panthers would move to add a running back to the 90-man roster.


"We're a little bit thin, but we'll find somebody to come in and replace him and have another body come in to compete for a position on this football team," Rivera said. "It's disappointing because the young man is a solid football player that has a history of being a workhorse.


"We're disappointed for him. We're disappointed for us."