The Carolina Panthers may have picked up a gem during free agency…
I remember when the Carolina Panthers first signed him back in March. I got a lot of “Who?” and “Big whoop” comments when I wrote that Jeremiah Sirles signed with the team. To be honest, I did not know that much about him myself. It appears that Carolina Panthers fans may need to get to know his name a little better as he looks to get a shot at the left guard position during camp.
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He is not a flashy player, as most offensive lineman are not flashy to begin with. Even still, the former Wisconsin product can prove to be an underrated signing. After beginning his career with the San Diego Chargers, Sirles found a niche and home with the Minnesota Vikings. . His best season statistically came in 2016. That year, he was the beneficiary of ample playing time. He played in 14 games, starting 10 of them.
As the left guard position continues to leave question marks, the signing may prove to be bigger than we thought. Friday, Jourdan Rodrigue of the Charlotte Observer did a great article about the Carolina Panthers problems at the offensive line position. In her “Underdog to Watch” segment of the article Sirles’ made the cut.
"Sirles’ arrival in Charlotte didn’t have much fanfare, but his experience is notable and will be a valuable tool for the Panthers. He started 14 games at left guard for the Vikings over the past two seasons, and can also play tackle."
The position battle will of course be decided during training camp, but Sirles should definitely be in the conversation to start at the position. The fact that he started so many games for the Vikings would be great at a position where experience is needed. In addition, the versatility that Rodrigue talked about would be helpful if the Carolina Panthers need any additional support on the line. Oftentimes, many players are one-dimensional. Having a multi-tool player in an era where the game has become specialized is a bonus.
At the end of the day, the Carolina Panthers need to sure up their offensive line. They have a couple candidates that can do it, they just need a bit more experience. Sirles seems like he would be a great candidate to man the left guard position. Especially on a one-year deal, this type of veteran help seems like a bargain. It will be interesting to see how he fits on the team.