Mayo is recovering from sports hernia surgery and is expected to make a full recovery, Joe Person of The Athletic reports.
Mayo never missed a game in 2018, but he did pop up on the injury report prior to Week 10 with a groin issue. Regardless, sports hernia surgeries are rarely worth getting too concerned over at this stage in the offseason, as there's a strong possibility Mayo could be good to go again well before the start of team training camps -- which is great news for the linebacker, since Mayo is set to become an unrestricted free agent in March.
Mayo (groin) is active for Thursday's matchup against the Steelers, Jourdan Rodrigue of The Charlotte Observer reports.
Mayo's availability is something of a surprise, given that the depth linebacker was unable to participate during all three of Carolina's practice sessions this week. The fourth-year pro has played only one defensive snap since Week 6, so expect Mayo to see most of his work on special teams.
With Thomas Davis (suspension) set to miss the first four games of the regular season, Mayo is primed for a substantial increase in playing time. The 25-year-old averaged less than 10 defensive snaps per game in 2017, so it remains to be seen how Mayo will adjust to a starter's workload. With Davis considering retirement after the 2018 season, Mayo may eventually take over the starting weak-side linebacker position full time.