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Carolina Panthers sign contract with robot "KP" to connect with the community

KP the robot is here to help the Panthers connect with the community where COVID-19 protocols and policies make it difficult for in-person interaction.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Carolina Panthers added a new member to the roster -- and this guy isn't the typical player. 

The Panthers were looking for someone who was versatile, forward-thinking, and someone who can do what other players can't. More specifically, someone who has the ability to connect with fans without violating COVID-19 protocols. 

The team signed a new robot named KP  — short for "Keep Pounding" —  to help the team connect with children and the community. Panthers director of Player Negotiations and Salary-cap Manager, Samir Suleiman finalized the contract Tuesday morning at Bank of America Stadium.

"KP's communication and 'go everywhere' ability provides us with a unique way for Panthers players to directly engage with the community,"  Panthers Director of Community Relations Riley Fields said in a statement. 

According to the Panthers, players and coaches have been limited in their ability to reach out in the last two seasons due to COVID-19 protocols. Now, thanks to KP's 4K HD wide-angle camera and video screen, they can connect in new ways.

That could turn into visits with children in hospitals, appearances for school or military groups, or behind-the-scenes access that's not otherwise available.

"We are excited to welcome KP to the team," Panthers director of community relations Riley Fields said. "We continue to face COVID-related challenges for in-person access to schools, military and hospital visits plus other opportunities."

Keep an eye out over the next week, as KP begins to venture out into his new workplace, meet his new teammates, and connect with fans throughout the Carolinas and beyond. 

Scouting Report

Name: KP

Number: 51

College: Ohmni Labs

Height: 4-foot-8

Weight: 20 pounds

40-yard dash: 33.2 seconds

Wonderlic score: Confidential (But Panthers sources say it's off the charts) 

Tech Specs:  4K HD wide-angle camera, high-capacity battery, and ultra-responsive tilting neck for maximum connectivity 

Player comparisons: KP patterns his game after AI superstars including R2-D2, Rosie from The Jetsons, KITT from Knight Rider, and WALL-E. 

Scouting report notes: "Not physically imposing, but has a mind for the game, and a heart for reaching out to the community — a true team player."

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