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Panthers tender contracts to Carter, three others

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CHARLOTTE (AP) -- The Carolina Panthers have offered contracts to restricted free agent receiver Drew Carter and three other players.

The moves mean the Panthers can match any contract offers Carter, tight end Michael Gaines and defensive tackle Jordan Carstens receive from other teams. If they don't match the offer, the Panthers will receive draft picks as compensation.

The Panthers also tendered a contract to exclusive rights free agent Nate Salley, meaning no other team can offer him a contract.

Carter came on late last season and had eight catches for 144 yards and a touchdown in a loss to the New York Giants. He finished with 28 catches for 357 yards.

Gaines moved into Carolina's starting lineup last season. Carstens is a reserve who missed the final two months of the season with a blood clot on his left lung.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)