Curtis Samuel

Sports Injury Predictor

Preseason

Chance of Injury in 2020: question mark 65%
Chance of Injury per Game: question mark 6.4%
Projected Games missed for 2020: question mark 1.4
Durability: question mark 4

Medium Risk

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Curtis Samuel Player Overview

What You Need to Know:

-- Samuel ranked 10th in deep targets but just 46th in deep catches last season.

-- The Robby Anderson signing seems to shove Samuel out of the lead deep role.

-- Teddy Bridgewater arrives with a short-range arm but a history of elite accuracy.

-- Samuel has flashed big rushing upside in college and the pros.


The Wrong Role?

Samuel runs a 4.31-second 40. It’s not difficult to understand why last year’s Panthers liked sending him deep. But it just didn’t work that well.

Samuel tied for the league’s 10th-most deep targets (20-plus yards downfield), according to Pro Football Focus. But he tied for just 46th in deep receptions. Blame QB Kyle Allen for at least some of that -- and probably most of it. He tied for last among multi-game starters in adjusted completion rate on deep balls (29.6%).

But Samuel might have been miscast. He arrived at Ohio State in 2014 off a high school career at RB. He caught only 33 passes (vs. 75 carries) over his first 2 seasons. And even in his 74-catch Buckeyes finale, Samuel got more work on the ground (97 rushes).

He averaged just 11.7 yards per reception over 3 seasons at Ohio State. He has averaged just 11.4 per catch through 3 seasons in the pros, while also seeing his carries increase every season (up to 19 last year, 3rd on the team).


The Right Move?

The Panthers moved on from HC Ron Rivera to Matt Rhule this offseason, and the former Baylor coach tapped LSU passing-game coordinator Joe Brady to run his offense.

Early indications point to them not seeing Samuel as a primary downfield target. The Panthers signed WR Robby Anderson, a successful deep threat. Anderson has seen more than 30% of his targets come 20+ yards downfield in 3 of his 4 NFL seasons. And he played college ball under Rhule at Temple, so the Panthers’ new HC knows his game.

We haven’t yet heard specific plans from the new offensive braintrust. But a plan to…

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Curtis Samuel Injury History

Date League Injury Details
Nov 13, 2017 NFL Pedal Ankle Fracture Samuel broke a bone and suffered ligament damage in his left ankle. He needed surgery and missed the final 6 games.
Sep 24, 2017 NFL Back Lower Lumbar Sprain Samuel missed 1 game with an unspecified back issue.
Jul 28, 2017 NFL Thigh Hamstring Sprain/Pull Unspecified Grade 1 Samuel missed some camp practices and the 1st 2 preseason games with a hamstring strain.