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Reggie Wayne, Wes Welker Options For Carolina Panthers After Kelvin Benjamin Injury

USA Today

USA Today

The Carolina Panthers suffered a severe blow to their receiving corps this week with Kelvin Benjamin going down with a knee injury. As feared, Benjamin has a torn ACL and will miss the entire 2015 NFL season for the Panthers.

With Benjamin, arguably the team’s best offensive weapon outside of Cam Newton, out for the season, Carolina will be scrambling to find a viable replacement. Although all the top-tier free-agent wide receivers are off the board, the Panthers may have a few solid options to help fill the void for one season.

As Dan Hanzus of suggests, veterans Reggie Wayne and Wes Welker could be at the top of the list of replacements for Benjamin:

Reggie Wayne: The Colts’ hero struggled to make an impact last season and never really seemed to make it back from the torn ACL in October 2013. He’ll turn 37 in November.

Wes Welker: Once the most productive slot receiver in football, Welker saw his career derailed in Denver following multiple concussions. The 33-year-old lacked elusiveness last season, an observation backed by his career-low 9.5 yards per catch average.

Despite impressive resumes over the course of their careers, Wayne nor Welker has received considerable interest from teams around the league since becoming free agents. Both players are obviously on the decline and no longer the dominant forces of old downfield, but viable options for the Panthers nonetheless.

Other potential candidates for Carolina mentioned by Hanzus are Santana Moss, Santonio Holmes, Brandon Lloyd and Robert Meachem. One of these six free agents could receive a call from the Panthers this week as they try to find another weapon for Newton in the passing game after this devastating loss.

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