3 potential free-agent LB competition for Tahir Whitehead

(Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports) Tahir Whitehead
(Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports) Tahir Whitehead /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Peter G. Aiken/Getty Images) Darron Lee /

Darron Lee

Darron Lee comes with a colorful background. But he is a tremendously gifted player and providing he can rid himself of some off-the-field troubles, then it represents an intriguing pickup at this stage of the season.

The former first-round pick hasn’t turned out as expected, with his decisions away from the game costly him in a big way. He was handed a four-game suspension by the NFL last month that has further hampered his chances of earning a role elsewhere, which followed on from a similar enforced absence in 2018 for violating the league substance-abuse policy.

Things look bleak for the once-promising player, who has all the traits one looks for in a potential star at the next level. Lee is still young enough to turn things around, but there is little denying the fact that he is fastly running out of chances.

The Carolina Panthers’ current environment might be just what Lee is looking for. This is a young, energetic defense who have developed fantastic chemistry in a short space of time. But whether this would be enough to keep the player on the straight and narrow is another matter entirely.

It’s easy to forget that Lee did start two games for the Chiefs in 2019, eventually finishing the season with 31 combined tackles and 22 solo tackles. This would be a high risk, high reward pickup by Carolina that would represent a last chance saloon scenario for the former Ohio State Buckeye.