This week seems to be a popular time to sign offensive lineman to bulk up an NFL team's squad heading into training camp, and the Carolina Panthers have made a solid pickup for their center position. Former Pittsburgh Steelers center Fernando Velasco was signed by the Panthers, according to NBC Sports writer Darin Gantt, who stated:
The Panthers have huge questions at offensive tackle entering training camp, but they added a little depth in the middle of the line Wednesday.Via Bill Voth of Black and Blue Review, the Panthers have signed center Fernando Velasco. Panthers defensive end Charles Johnson sent out a photo of his former Georgia teammate at the stadium today.
Velasco filled in for starting Steelers Pro Bowl center Maurkice Pouncey for the last four games of the season after Pouncey tore his Achilles in Week 13. Velasco helped the Steelers to three wins out of those four games, only allowing a total of six sacks and one fumble lost in those four games.
Velasco will serve as the backup to Panthers starting center Ryan Kalil, a Pro Bowler himself, giving Velasco the chance to be a solid substitute in case Kalil goes down anytime throughout the 2014 season.