Panthers sign DT Edwards to two-year contract

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CHARLOTTE – The Panthers re-signed defensive tackle Dwan Edwards to a two-year contract hours before the start of free agency. "I wanted to finish what we started," Edwards said. "I got here three years ago, and the defense has been improving, we've made a couple playoff appearances and I want to see it through."

Since joining the Panthers in 2012, Edwards has been a key member of a unit that has ranked in the top 10 in the NFL in total defense in each of the last three seasons.

Last year, Edwards played 16 games as a part of Carolina's defensive tackle rotation and recorded 43 tackles, four sacks, 15 quarterback pressures and one interception. In 2013, he notched three sacks after amassing a career-high six sacks – the second most by a defensive tackle in team history - in 2012.

With Edwards and Colin Cole re-signed, the Panthers defensive tackle rotation – headlined by starters Star Lotulelei and Kawann Short – remains intact heading into the 2015 season.

"Dwan has been very productive as a part of the defensive tackle rotation with Star Lotulelei, Kawann Short and Colin Cole," head coach Ron Rivera said.  "I really appreciate the senior leadership he brings to the defensive line room and I'm excited to have him back on our team."

Said Edwards: "We've got a great chemistry on the defensive line, and despite some of the challenges that faced us last year, we continued to battle and young guys stepped up, and (defensive line coach Eric) Washington did a great job. It was a great group to be a part of. From where we started to where we are now, I wanted to be a part of this."

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