Panthers: The Positives and Negatives of the Offseason: Offense

DENVER, CO - DECEMBER 31: Running back C.J. Anderson #22 of the Denver Broncos takes the field before a game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on December 31, 2017 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - DECEMBER 31: Running back C.J. Anderson #22 of the Denver Broncos takes the field before a game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on December 31, 2017 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images) /

After a complete revamp of the offense of the Carolina Panthers, let’s look at the problems the front office has solved, and maybe others that have been created…

After the Carolina Panthers’ disappointing playoff exit, the entire football world knew that Cam Newton desperately needed more weapons. The Panthers’ front office did their due diligence, and via free agency, trades, and the draft, successfully revamped the offense. According to the official Panthers’ website, here is a list of all that the Panthers’ offseason transactions that were geared towards the offense.

Authors’ Note: The transactions in bold are ones that I consider to be more significant. 

Offensive Line

  • 01/08/2018 Signed G Dorian Johnson to a reserve-future contract
  • 01/29/2018 Extension signing C Greg Van Roten 
  • 03/16/2018 Claimed T Zach Banner off waivers
  • 03/23/2018 Free agent signing G Jeremiah Sirles
  • 03/26/2018 Panthers re-sign G Amini Silatolu
  • 04/16/2018 Extension signing C Tyler Larsen
  • 05/01/2018 Free agent signing T Korren Kirven
  • 05/11/2018 Undrafted rookie signing G Kyle Bosch
  • 05/11/2018 Undrafted rookie G Taylor Hearn
  • 05/11/2018 Undrafted rookie signing G Brendan Mahon
  • 05/14/2018 Free agent signing G Quinterrius Eatmon
  • 05/14/2018 Free agent signing C Kyle Friend

Wide Receiver

  • 01/08/2018 Signed WR Rasheed Bailey to a reserve-future contract
  • 01/08/2018 Signed WR Austin Duke to a reserve-future contract
  • 01/08/2018 Signed WR Jamaal Jones to a reserve-future contract
  • 03/14/2018 Acquired WR Torrey Smith for Cornerback in a trade with Philadelphia
  • 03/20/2018 Free agent signing WR Jarius Wright 
  • 04/16/2018 Extension signing WR Damiere Byrd
  • 04/26/2018 Drafted WR DJ Moore
  • 05/14/2018 Free agent signing WR Bug Howard

Tight End

  • 01/08/2018 Signed TE Kent Taylor to a reserve-future contract
  • 01/08/2018 Signed TE Evan Baylis to a reserve-future contract
  • 03/13/2018 Extension signing TE Chris Manhertz
  • 04/26/2018 Extension signing TE Greg Olsen
  • 04/28/2018 Drafted TE Ian Thomas

Running back

  • 05/07/2018 Free agent signing RB C.J. Anderson
  • 05/08/2018 Claimed RB Elijah Hood off waivers (Oakland)
  • 05/11/2018 Undrafted rookie signing RB Reggie Bonnafon
  • 05/11/2018 Free agent signing RB Kenjon Barner 

More from Cat Crave

The Carolina Panthers have much to be grateful for during this offseason. Their extensive offensive haul came during a time of turbulent ownership and uncertainty. Now that that chaos that has ended, we can truly step back and examine their offseason.


  • After the  lack of  depth of the Panthers receiver core was exposed late last season, the front office made a concerted effort to bring in players. Aggressively, they traded for Torrey Smith and signed Damiere Byrd, both of whom are legit deep threats.
  • The Panthers’ front office threw bodies towards the offensive line. There are a lot of serviceable names there like Larson, Silatolu, Sirles, and Van Roten. With the void at left guard, these bodies will be crucial in a training camp battle for the starting position. Let’s pray at least one of them prove up to the challenge.
  • While TE Greg Olsen signed a contract extension, everyone knows that his days are numbered. Ian Thomas has the potential to be a mismatch nightmare similar to Olsen. His size, speed, and athleticism were overlooked during the draft process by most teams due to his lack of targets. Thomas (hopefully) will be able to learn from Olsen and develop some of the strongest hands in the league.
  • Thomas wasn’t the only offensive weapon the Panthers’ drafted. DJ Moore is a day one impact player with the potential to blow the top off any defense. Add in that killer instinct once the ball is in his hands and we very well may have another Steve Smith on our hands.
  • A two-headed monster at the running back position with Christian McCaffrey and C.J. Anderson? Yes, please! The only wish here is that Anderson signed a longer deal.
  • Norv Turner has the offensive mind to unlock the potential of all of these players.


  • There might be a little bit too much depth at the receiving positions. It’s just a little bit worrying how similar the skill sets of  Smith and  /Byrd are. Both are speedy deep threats.
  • That’s not nearly as worrying as the slot. Consider this, Jarius Wright is an established slot receiver in this league. However, his presence could stunt the growth of Curtis Samuels. Also, when McCaffrey or C.J. Anderson split out of the backfield, where will they line up? That slot position is jammed and concern for the development of Samuels and McCaffrey is legitimate.
  • There’s no clear-cut option to fill the void at left guard. Andrew Norwell was a rock on the offensive line and replacing him will be a headache. Getting that position down will have to be one of the top priorities of the coaching staff.

Next: Hall of Fame quarterback Troy Aikman at Panthers OTAs

Despite the stresses that the front office may have created, it’s much better than the alternatives. The front office has put the pieces in place, now it’s up to the coaching staff the unlock all that potential.