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Panthers sign 3rd round pick Johnson

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CHARLOTTE (AP) -- The Carolina Panthers have signed their third-round draft pick, defensive end Charles Johnson of Georgia.

Johnson is the third of eight draft picks to sign. Carolina expects its unsigned picks, including first-round choice Jon Beason and second-round picks Dwayne Jarrett and Ryan Kalil, to sign before players report to training camp July 27th.

The six-foot-two, 270-pound Johnson had 73 tackles and 14 and a half sacks in three years at Georgia. Johnson had nine and a half sacks last season and was a second-team all-Southeastern Conference pick.

Johnson, who left school after his junior season, is expected to contend for significant playing time next season after the Panthers released defensive end Al Wallace in a salary cap move.

Also Monday, the Panthers waived defensive tackle Marques Thornton, an undrafted rookie from Texas A&M.