The Michigan Panthers added three more players over the past week. After making a splash by adding former Kansas City Chiefs Defensive Lineman Breeland Speaks, the Panthers brought back a familiar face in Running Back Stevie Scott, as well as adding more NFL experience to the backfield in former Eagles/Jets/Saints Running Back Josh Adams.
The Panthers also continued to fortify their Offensive Line by signing University of Texas Offensive Tackle Denzel Okafor, who recently spent some time with the Jaguars as an Undrafted free agent.
Josh Adams comes to the Panthers after spending 2021 with the Saints on their practice squad, Adams was cut by the Saints in May of 2022 prior to the start of OTAs and Mini Camp. Adams has appeared in 26 games over his NFL career, with his rookie season in 2018 being his most prolific. Adams rushed for 511 yards over 14 games (5 starts) for the Eagles however was cut upon the Eagles drafting Miles Sanders. Adams spent 2019 and 2020 with the Jets but never saw the same amount of playing time he earned in his rookie season. In his lone appearance with the Saints in 2021, Adams was utilized completely on special teams and did not play at all on offense.
Stevie Scott returns to the Panthers after spending 2022 with the Broncos during training camp. Scott was a versatile running back who contributed to one of the more dynamic rushing attacks in the USFL. Scott joins Cam Scarlett and Reggie Corbin along with newcomer Ladarren Brown in hopes of continuing the Panthers dominance between the trenches. During his USFL season recorded 99 carries for 310 yards and 3 TDs, in addition to providing a spark on the Panthers Special Teams unit.
The last signing the Panthers secured was former University of Texas offensive lineman Denzel Okafor. Okafor was recently with the Jaguars during 2022 their mini-camp however, was released a week later. Okafor was injured during the 2021 season suffering a knee injury on Oct 2nd for the Longhorns. After starting 18 games in college Okafor has the opportunity to now put together a full-season of film to show professional football scouts he’s a Bonafide starter at a high level.
With training camp for the USFL several months away, the Panthers will continue to build and add to their roster. With 12/31 being a notable date for USFL players, the “pre-camp” roster for the Panthers should be a bit more solidified. Upon 12/31 many USFL players will be “released” from their contracts in hopes of catching on with the XFL whose supplemental draft is scheduled for the 1st of January.
Currently the Panthers have seen DeAndre Torrey, and Jameson Houston depart for the XFL, while Tino Ellis (Dolphins), TJ Carter (Rams), and Lance Lenoir (Rams) remain on NFL practice squads. With the resigning of Scott, the only former Panther still a free agent is Ishmael Hyman who spent 2022’s training camp with the Packers. For Panthers fans the next several weeks will be instrumental in seeing the final product for their 2023 season.