Carolina Panthers defensive tackle Kawann Short will undergo season-ending surgery on his right shoulder, coach Matt Rhule said Wednesday.
It marks the second straight season in which Short went down with a shoulder injury. He played in just two games last season before undergoing season-ending surgery on his left shoulder.
This season, Short’s shoulder injury occurred in the third quarter of last Sunday’s 23-16 victory over the Atlanta Falcons.
“Our hearts break for him. He worked so hard to come back this year,” Rhule said. “He’s such an integral part of this team, and he will continue to be an integral part of this team.”
Short, 31, missed two games earlier this season due to a foot injury. He finishes this season with six tackles in three games.
Short, a two-time Pro Bowl selection with 32.5 career sacks, played in 94 of 96 regular-season games in his first six seasons with Carolina. He will appear in just five of 32 over the 2019 and 2020 seasons.
Short is in the fourth season of a five-year, $80 million deal.
Zach Kerr filled in for Short earlier this season and is expected to do so again Sunday when the Panthers face the Chicago Bears.
Kerr has played in 80 NFL games (14 starts) over seven seasons with the Indianapolis Colts (2014-16), Denver Broncos (2017-18), Arizona Cardinals (2019) and Panthers. He has 7.5 career sacks.
Also, running back Christian McCaffrey (ankle) didn’t practice after missing the past three games. McCaffrey is on injured reserve and Rhule said he “won’t be activated as of right now.”