The left tackle position is an important one for the Carolina Panthers.
Another day, another chance for the Panthers to get better. Yesterday the Panthers pended a trade: a pro bowl right guard for a pro bowl left tackle, and the decision was met with mixed reactions.
People can say whatever they want about the cap space, the apparent contrast to the end of acquiring young talent, and even the creation of a new problem on the offensive line. However, people also have to think about what the Panthers are trying to do this season.
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The Panthers want to create a winning culture this year and they want to find out who truly wants and deserves to be here. With that said, they have to think about what sacrifices can comfortably be made to find out who their future play makers and play keepers are.
If this ends up being a short-term thing, then it wouldn’t be the first time the Panthers handed a one-year deal to proven veteran. It’s not a bad idea considering that the Panthers desperately need to improve their pass protection if they want to improve their passing game. Obviously two rookies weren’t enough to get the job done, so maybe bringing in a solid mentor for the youngsters can help them get better. It worked with Irvin and Burns so why not Okung and Little?
We all want the Panthers’ offense to succeed, and that success starts up front.
This deal was made in good faith that Newton can come back and have a successful season as a Panther, but they also have to show that they’re trying to make it comfortable for him to come back and be successful.
At this point most stories on the Newton conundrum are just for maintaining his relevance in the trade conversation. His rehabilitation seems to be going well, according to his own media team, and coach Rhule is preparing to get to work with him. Why? Because the brass knows Newton has a lot to prove now and they want him to prove it.
Now that the biggest problem is in the interior of the offensive line the Panthers can look at who can step up and be a versatile option. Maybe the Panthers are also looking to work Mr. Daley into being an option as an interior offensive lineman, and maybe it’ll be more manageable than being lined up against pass rushers while the OC is trying to work out a successful passing play.
It’s also worth noting that Okung has played in the same division as the most recent world champion, a team that has the same edge rusher who ruined the Panthers’ Super Bowl season, and another team that had the 2019 first-round edge rusher who played a key part of the 2019 Clemson championship team. All while allowing zero sacks. Sure he was injured for ten games, but even before that he allowed less than five sacks in thirty starts with the Chargers.
Panther Nation, you wanted the team to get a solid left tackle for their franchise QB? Now they’ve got it, and now there’s time to see how much better the offense can be when the blind side is on lock down.
To me this says the Panthers are in “prove it now” mode. Now that the play makers have protection it’s time for them to make some plays.