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Devin Funchess not letting a long-time condition cramp his style


CHARLOTTE -- A pair of compression shorts, some ice or a day of rest often seems like a quick fix for any ailment that a player is experiencing, no matter how nagging it might be.

But for wide receiver Devin Funchess, the answer hasn't been that simple during his four-year NFL career. Or the 13 years leading up to it.

Following the Panthers' 33-31 win over the Giants, it was revealed that cramping forced Funchess to exit the game during Carolina's final drive.

The news sparked questions surrounding his status and, in an unexpected move, the usually low-key Funchess took to Twitter to address what happened:

A lack of hydration is commonly cited as the leading cause of cramps, but, in Funchess' case, that hasn't been the clear-cut explanation. On Thursday, the wideout revealed that the issue extends way beyond the New York game.

"Since I was eight years old, I've been cramping," Funchess said. "It got bad in high school but I just try to play for my team and make sure I do what I can even if I do have to go back and battle through with it."

Funchess also expressed that his tweet was meant to "let everybody know this is what happens" and that the cramping - while it is frustrating - won't hinder his effort.

"I'm an extreme cramper while I'm out there, but I'm going to make sure I do what I can to help the team," he added.

Funchess has been a Panther since 2015 and, even with his condition, has turned into a solid option for quarterback Cam Newton. Through four games in 2018, Funchess has recorded 18 receptions for 238 yards and one touchdown.

As far as figuring out long-term treatment, Funchess says the answer remains unknown but, after dealing with it for most of his life, he won't let it start getting in the way regardless.

"Doctors and everybody else are still trying to figure it out. It's been a long process trying to figure it out," Funchess shared. "Hopefully they can figure it out but, if not, I know how to play with it."

View photos from the week of practice leading up to the Panthers' game against Washington.