CHARLOTTE — The Panthers got rid of a potential distraction and added some future draft capital Monday, sending wide receiver Robbie Anderson to the Cardinals in exchange for undisclosed draft compensation, after Anderson's sideline display in Sunday's loss to the Rams. The deal is pending a physical.
According to multiple reports, the Panthers will receive a 2024 sixth-round pick and a 2025 seventh-round pick for Anderson.
The move might not change a lot in the short term for the Panthers, as Anderson had just 13 catches for 206 yards and one touchdown for an offense that struggled in the first six games. Much of that came on one 75-yard scoring pass in the opener against the Browns.
But those numbers were only underscored by Sunday's events, when Anderson was kicked off the field by interim coach Steve Wilks after multiple sideline altercations between the receiver and position coach Joe Dailey. It was the culmination of a strange day for Anderson, who took the field for pre-game warmups shirtless, and sat alone on a cooler away from teammates between the first and second spat with Dailey.
"It was a sideline-type situation, that I felt like I wanted to try to get him in at the moment," Wilks said after the game. "It's something we'll discuss as we get further into the week. . . .
"I'm going to say this; no one is bigger than the team. I don't want to focus a lot of attention on one individual."
That one individual seemed surprised that anyone would be surprised at his actions, saying it was based on his desire to be more involved in the game.
"I was honestly confused, and upset by it as I should be," Anderson said at a press conference after the game. "I don't see nobody that's a true competitor and knows the value they bring, that's a true competitor and has a true passion for the game that's OK with being told not to do something or being taken out of something when they didn't do anything wrong."
It also carries some symbolic weight, as it was the first non-injury-related transaction of the post-Matt Rhule era. Rhule coached Anderson at Temple.
Anderson came to the Panthers in 2020 and enjoyed his most productive season, catching a career-high 95 passes for 1,096 yards and three touchdowns. But after he got a contract extension the following offseason, his numbers dipped sharply, with just 53 catches for 519 yards and five scores in 2021.