4 potential difference-makers for Panthers at the Saints in Week 7

(Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports) Robby Anderson
(Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports) Robby Anderson /
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Carolina Panthers
(Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Franklin /

SAMFRANKLIN. 4. S. CAROLINA PANTHERS. player. 87. Scouting Report. Pick Analysis

Sam Franklin – Carolina Panthers S

Losing the services of Juston Burris for a considerable period is yet another blow that the Carolina Panthers need to overcome. The safety damaged his ribs against the Bears and this is an area of the field that doesn’t have much in the way of experienced depth.

One of the players who could benefit most from Burris’ absence is Sam Franklin. The talented defensive back has been a nice surprise for the Panthers, visibly growing in stature both during training camp and the time he’s spent on the 53-man roster ever since.

It would be a mistake to move Jeremy Chinn onto the backend due to the dismal recent form of Shaq Thompson and Tahir Whitehead at linebacker. This might mean Franklin gets his first NFL start and given the way New Orleans likes to target inexperienced players, he could be in for a testing afternoon.

Franklin has been involved in just seven percent of the team’s defensive snaps, but he did catch the eye when Burris went down in Week 6. His production has resulted in a creditable 70.0 grade from Pro Football Focus and the coaching staff appears confident in his ability to rise to the occasion.

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He is going to go through some struggles, but if Franklin can come up with the odd play here or three, it is going to make a massive difference.