The Carolina Panthers signed a kicker on Friday, and declared veteran placekicker Graham Gano out for Sunday’s game at Cleveland with a left knee injury.
Former Clemson kicker and South Carolina native Chandler Catanzaro was signed to the active roster, and the team placed guard Amini Silatolu (knee) on injured reserve as the corresponding move.
Catanzaro was among a handful of kickers who worked out for the Panthers after Gano missed a second field goal in as many weeks.
But he and his wife, who were most recently in Tampa Bay, got the call on Thursday as they were preparing to move closer to Catanzaro’s Greenville, S.C., family.
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“Me and my wife, we had loaded up our car to move back to Tampa, actually, and we were driving up to Charleston,” he said on Friday afternoon. “We had just gotten Zaxby’s when I got the call. So it’s pretty weird. So I stopped eating my large chicken finger plate, drank some water, and got to the Charleston airport and thankfully got here in time. It’s crazy.”
Gano was listed as a limited participant in Thursday’s practice. He had been listed as a full participant in Wednesday’s practice.
Before missing kicks in back-to-back games in Weeks 11 and 12, Gano had hit all of his field goal attempts this season, including a 63-yard game-winner against New York in Week 5. He has made 30 of 33 extra points this season.
Catanzaro was most recently in Tampa Bay, where he hit 11 of 15 field goals and 23 of 27 before missing two kicks in a Week 10 loss to Washington. He was released after the game.
He played for the Cardinals for the first four years of his career and had a brief stint with the Jets in 2017.
Catanzaro said that things have been so crazy for him over the past couple of days, he didn’t even know the Panthers played in Cleveland this Sunday.
But he actually has never missed a kick, in nine attempts, in Cleveland’s stadium. He has hit six field goals on six attempts and three extra points.