CHARLOTTE – Cornerback Charles Tillman will miss his third consecutive game with a knee injury when the Panthers face the Saints in New Orleans on Sunday, and defensive Mario Addison will be sidelined with an ankle injury.
Wide receiver Philly Brown is set to return from a shoulder injury that forced him to miss two games. Brown is listed as probable, along with defensive end Kony Ealy and defensive tackles Dwan Edwards and Star Lotulelei.
Head coach Ron Rivera said that Teddy Williams would continue to serve as the top backup at outside corner against the Saints. Rivera said that veteran Cortland Finnegan, signed earlier this week, has been getting up to speed at nickel and could see some reps there along with Colin Jones.
Rivera wasn't sure if Tillman and Addison would travel to New Orleans. If they stay behind, they could do something Rivera wishes the schedule would allow him to do. Rivera said with the Panthers having last played on Thanksgiving Day, he wishes the schedule had worked out for him to see Clemson take on North Carolina in the Dr Pepper ACC Football Championship Game at Bank of America Stadium (8 p.m., ABC).
"I think it's great for the Carolinas to have Clemson and UNC in this game. I think it will be a tremendous showdown," Rivera said. "It's exciting, it really is, to be this close to the number one team and a team that could be an upstart."
Rivera pointed out that UNC wide receiver Austin Proehl – son of Panthers wide receivers coach Ricky Proehl – was once a ball boy for the Panthers. Even so, Rivera isn't sure who he'll be pulling for.
"I'm torn because I'm a Dabo Swinney fan as well as a (Larry) Fedora fan. Both of those guys have done a nice job of building programs and representing the Carolinas," he said.
View photos from the Panthers' week of practice leading up to their game against the Saints.