Kuechly wobbled to the ground after tackling Jacksonville Jaguars running back T.J. Yeldon late in the first half. Kuechly tried to stand up, but dropped to the ground again. He was immediately taken into the locker room, and the team later said he would not return. Shaq Thompson replaced him.
Kuechly signed a five-year, $62 million contract earlier this week.
Jacksonville left tackle Luke Joeckel won't return from a left ankle injury suffered three plays after Kuechly as hurt. Jaguars safety Johnathan Cyprien (right calf) and receiver Allen Robinson (left knee) left in the first half, but both later returned.
Panthers backup offensive tackle Daryl Williams (right knee) left the game in the first quarter and will not return.
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