Carolina signed Palardy after Lee went on injured reserve with a hamstring injury last year. He played in the final seven games of the season – the first regular season action of his NFL career – generating a gross average of 42.5 yards and a net average of 37.9 with 13 punts inside the 20, two touchbacks and a long of 56 yards on 36 punts.
Palardy and Lee were engaged in a tight race throughout training camp and the preseason. Palardy finished the preseason with 47.5-yard average on 10 punts. Lee posted a 45.9-yard average on seven punts.
The Panthers acquired Lee in a trade with the Cleveland Browns prior to the start of the 2016 season. Carolina received Lee and a 2017 seventh-round draft choice in exchange for punter Kasey Redfern and a 2018 fourth-round draft choice. Lee, a sixth-round draft choice by the 49ers in 2004 and a Pro Bowler in 2007, 2009 and 2011, missed the first games of his career last season.