As the Carolina Panthers offseason continues, more roster rumors begin to swirl.
Carolina Panthers owner David Tepper signaled change was coming when he fired the most successful coach in franchise history with four weeks remaining last season. Parting ways with Ron Rivera didn’t come as a surprise but naming former Baylor coach Matt Rhule as his replacement did. Hiring a collegiate coach with little NFL experience is uncommon but Tepper is methodically putting his own stamp on the Panthers organization.
Already this offseason Carolina has lost linebacker Luke Kuechly to retirement and parted ways with veteran tight end Greg Olsen. In addition, the list of potential free agents is long and the health of quarterback Cam Newton remains up in the air. Facing a new direction under Rhule, rumors surrounding the franchise continue to flourish.
Ryan Tannehill, QB
Mike Freeman of Bleacher Report goes on the record that teams aren’t sold on Carolina electing to continue with Newton under center. In fact, he even mentions Ryan Tannehill as someone the Panthers may be targeting during free agency in order to lead the offense next season.
Trai Turner, G
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Panthers offensive guard Trai Turner is riding a streak of five consecutive Pro Bowl nominations and is arguably the most consistent lineman of the past few seasons. Two years remain on his current contract and at just 27 years old by the start of play in 2020, Turner should have a few more quality seasons in the tank. Despite these positives and serving as a potential building block up front, Jenna Laine of ESPN is reporting Turner is being shopped around as Carolina looks for potential trade partners.
Dontari Poe, DT
Dontari Poe is likely not going to return following his quad injury, age and potential cap savings but the Panthers will have an opportunity to pick up his option in 2020. However, according to Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic, Carolina will pass and look elsewhere to bolster their defensive front. Targeting a lineman with the seventh overall pick has always been a possibility and Derrick Brown (Auburn) is becoming a popular name.
Expect some answers and likely many more questions as the offseason progresses toward free agency and the NFL Draft later this spring.