Panthers banged up DBs preparing for Eli, Giants

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The Carolina Panthers have some major injury concerns in the secondary as they prepare to host Eli Manning and the New York Giants on Sunday in a game crucial for both 0-2 teams. Carolina lost starting free safety Charles Godfrey over the weekend to a torn Achilles tendon and five other defensive backs missed all or part of Wednesday’s practice, including starting cornerback Josh Thomas (concussion). Safety Quintin Mikell (knee) and cornerbacks Thomas, DJ Moore (knee) and Josh Norman (thigh) sat out practice, while cornerback James Dockery (hand) was limited. Panthers coach Ron Rivera hopes to get some of those injured players back this week, but says undrafted rookie Robert Lester — signed from the practice squad on Tuesday — will start Sunday at strong safety if Mikell can’t play. ___ AP NFL website

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