Carolina Panthers: 3 positions that could be better than expected

(Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) John Miller
(Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) John Miller /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) Taylor Moton /

Carolina Panthers position No. 2: Offensive line

The Carolina Panthers struggled on their offensive line in 2019. This played a leading role in their eventual downfall. And it remains to be seen whether this revamped group can make the necessary improvements next time around.

Much will depend on the future of veteran left tackle Russell Okung. The Pro Bowler was acquired via a trade that sent prolific protector Trai Turner to the Los Angeles Chargers. But the current climate has forced the Super Bowl winner to contemplate retirement amid health concerns.

Although Okung claimed he was “fully committed” to playing the season. The lineman has made more than enough money throughout his career. And the ten games he missed due to a pulmonary embolism caused by blood clots is a worry that might end up with him calling it a day.

The Panthers have a potentially elite right tackle in Taylor Moton. He emerged as one of the NFL’s brightest young edge protectors in 2019. And an increase in production is almost assured heading into a contract year.

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Their interior protection is a bit of an unknown quantity following Carolina’s decision to trade away Turner, who was a perennial Pro Bowler during his time with the organization. John Miller and Michael Schofield have plenty of starting experience. And the Panthers could also shift Dennis Daley over to the guard spot next season.

Center Matt Paradis faces a make-or-break year after struggling significantly during the previous campaign. But he was not exactly done any favours by those alongside him.

If this group comes together quickly. They will have two bookend edge protectors and an interior than could become a surprising element in terms of improvement.