Carolina Panthers WR Chark Recovering From Ankle Surgery

The Carolina Panthers made a high-risk, high-reward gamble when they signed oft-injured wide receiver D.J. Chark, but they apparently know what they're getting into. Speaking with the media Tuesday morning, head coach Frank Reich revealed the former Detroit Lion recently underwent ankle surgery but is expected to be ready for a portion of OTAs.

The Panthers signed Chark to a one-year, $5 million deal earlier this offseason after he compiled 502 receiving yards and three touchdowns with the Lions in 2022.

Chark was once one of the league's most promising young wide receivers, but injuries have sapped him of some of his potential in recent years. After a breakout 2019 season that included 1008 receiving yards and eight touchdowns, Chark's career was derailed by a 2021 ankle fracture. He has totalled a mere 1362 receiving yards over the past three seasons.

Still only 26 years old, Chark has elite tools that can make him an explosive wide receiver so long as he can stay on the field. Listed at 6'4" and 199 lbs, Chark ran a blazing fast 4.34 40-yard dash at the combine and posted an excellent 40" vertical jump. If that athleticism is still lurking inside him somewhere, he has a real chance to be a difference-maker on the outside. Hopefully, he has healthier times ahead. 

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