Panthers sign OT Michael Oher to 3-year contract extension

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The Panthers are making sure Cam Newton's blind side is protected.

Carolina signed left tackle Michael Oher to a three-year contract extension on Friday. The 30-year-old Oher is now under contract through the 2019 season. Financial terms were not announced Friday.

''I'm very excited,'' Oher said in a release. ''I really can't wait to get to work. I don't want to let these guys down. They believe in me.''

Oher, a seven-year NFL veteran, was brought in on a trial basis last season, signing a two-year deal with the Panthers after a failed stint with the Tennessee Titans.

Oher, who was the subject of the hit movie ''The Blind Side,'' performed well, helping Carolina to lead the NFL with 142.6 yards rushing per game. The Panthers went 17-2 and won the NFC Championship while setting a team record with an NFL-leading 500 points and 59 touchdowns. Newton was chosen the league's MVP.

''Michael came in here last year and fit in extremely well. He really had a solid year,'' Panthers general manager Dave Gettleman said in a release. ''He's in his prime right now and he's healthy. He's become a quality player for us.''

Oher has started 107 games since being selected out of Mississippi in the first round of the 2009 NFL draft by Baltimore. He spent five years with the Ravens, winning a Super Bowl ring there.

The 6-foot-4, 315-pound Oher joined Carolina as a free agent in 2015 after spending 2014 with the Titans.

He spent his first two seasons in Baltimore under John Matsko, then the offensive line coach for Baltimore. Last season he was reunited with Matsko in Carolina.

For his career, Oher has started all 107 regular season games played and all 13 postseason games played.

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP-NFL

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