By Eric Schmidt

The Carolina Panthers pulled off a pair of trades on Monday as the team prepares to open training camp later this week. The Panthers traded OT Jeff Otah to the New York Jets for what is being reported as a seventh-round draft pick in next year’s NFL Draft. The Panthers also acquired WR Louis Murphy from the Oakland Raiders for a conditional pick. These moves could actually be considered a virtual trade of Jeff Otah for Louis Murphy in essence.

Otah was a former first-round selection for the Panthers and appeared to be poised for a very promising career with Carolina. The offensive tackle has been plagued with injuries throughout his career however and has played in just four games in the last two seasons. Otah should be able to replace Wayne Hunter at right tackle for the Jets heading into the 2012 season. If he can remain healthy, and at this point that has to be considered a big if, he could be a significant upgrade to the Jets offensive line.

The Panthers also acquired WR Louis Murphy. Murphy is a speedy receiver with a large frame which has struggled with injuries as well in his young career. Murphy underwent sports hernia surgery last season and was limited to just 15 receptions. The trade for Murphy now makes even more sense as the Panthers will start training camp with WR David Gettis on the PUP list. Gettis is rehabbing from ACL surgery and obviously is not ready to get back on the field for Carolina at this time.

This is the second trade between the Raiders and Panthers this season. In March, the Raiders sent OL Bruce Campbell to the Panthers for RB Mike Goodson. Goodson became expendable after the club acquired RB Mike Tolbert in free agency. Campbell was selected by the Raiders in 2010. Campbell saw his stock rise rapidly after the NFL Combine as a result of his freakish workout.

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