Carolina Panthers training camp: 4 big questions facing the DL

(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) Derrick Brown
(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) Derrick Brown /
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Kawann Short, Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) Kawann Short /

Carolina Panthers Question No. 3: Can Kawann Short dominate at full health?

Losing Kawann Short to a torn rotator cuff early on last season played a huge part in the Carolina Panthers underperforming on defense. He has been the lynchpin of everything good within the organization over a prolonged period. And he promises to have another big say in how well they perform next time around.

Short was playing at an exceptionally high level before his season-ending injury in 2019. He is a relentless force on the interior that provides strong production individually. But the Pro Bowler also commands plenty of attention to allow others more space to work in.

This is probably going to be Short’s final season in Carolina if both parties cannot agree to a restructure. The lineman is set to count a whopping $20.83 million against the Panthers’ salary cap in 2021. And it is highly unlikely the $9 million saving is not going to be utilized by the front office.

Related Story. Should the Carolina Panthers restructure Kawann Short’s contract?. light

If Short hits the ground running and returns to the player of old. It will do his chances of earning a new deal with the Panthers or elsewhere the world of good.

Carolina’s run defense was abysmal in his absence last season. But having him back and slotting Derrick Brown alongside him at defensive tackle has limitless potential.

Short has been making all the right noises upon his return to camp. But there is just no telling how much of an impact he can make coming off such a severe injury until we seem him on the field.