The Carolina Panthers’ three-day minicamp wrapped up Thursday with a key defensive starter on the sideline.
Fifth-year defensive tackle Star Lotulelei is coming off offseason surgery to clean up his shoulder, but is expected to be ready for the start of training camp next month, according to a team official.
Lotulelei’s surgery – similar to the procedure edge rusher Mario Addison underwent last year – had not been previously reported.
Lotulelei, the team’s 2013 first-round pick, participated in position drills during the first two days of minicamp while being held out of scrimmage situations. He joined the other injured players for stretching and strengthening exercises during Thursday’s session.
Lotulelei is set to earn $6.76 million in the final year of his rookie deal after the Panthers exercised his fifth-year option.
Panthers coach Ron Rivera said defensive end Ryan Delaire is the only injured player who might not be ready when camp starts in six weeks.
Delaire underwent knee surgery last season and had two stints on injured reserve. He was activated in November only to return to IR a month later after his knee flared up.
Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton crashes an interview with rookie Christian McCaffrey at the team's minicamp.Jourdan Rodrigue The Charlotte Observer