Both starting tackles are already on injured reserve.
Their perennial Pro Bowl tight end is out for a bit with a broken foot. And a Pro Bowl right guard is in the concussion protocol this week.
So how does Panthers offensive coordinator Norv Turner cover for all those issues.
“Cam Newton,” Turner replied, via Jourdan Rodrigue of the Charlotte Observer. “He hides a lot of things, a lot of deficiencies. And you can’t ask him to carry everything. But we have talented guys. We have receivers who can run and catch, we have backs who can run and catch. We have tight ends who have multiple skills.
“We just, again, we have to take our guys and see where we match up against Atlanta and get the best matchups we can, and avoid the real bad matchups.”
The Panthers are going to have to figure out who’s playing in front of him, for starters. With tackles Matt Kalil and Daryl Williams on IR and right guard Trai Turner unlikely to play this week while in the concussion protocol, finding an offensive line will be a challenge. Olsen’s a different problem, because there are few tight ends in the league who could match his kind of production.
Newton’s stats last year weren’t appreciably worse when Olsen was out last year, and wide receiver Devin Funchess looked like a viable option during that time. Now, they’re going to have to rely on a more diverse set of receiving targets and backs, as they try to reset an offense on the fly, and considering the state of their blocking, on the run.