5 free agency bargains the Carolina Panthers should add in 2021

(Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) Trey Burton
(Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) Trey Burton /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) Nick Vigil /

Nick Vigil – LB

Not having Luke Kuechly commanding the defense really hurt the Carolina Panthers this season. The legendary linebacker called it a day after eight fantastic seasons with the franchise and while it was always going to be difficult for anybody to step in and fill the void, free-agent signing Tahir Whitehead was lackluster at best.

Things did improve somewhat when Jermaine Carter was slotted into the lineup. But this should be an area where reinforcements are made this offseason.

Nick Vigil represents an enticing proposition who might not accept a new deal with the Los Angeles Chargers if he gets an offer of more playing time elsewhere. He signed a one-year deal with the organization last year and took advantage of what playing time he had to put together some stellar numbers.

It’s easy to forget that Vigil put together a 111-tackle campaign during his final season with the Cincinnati Bengals, so he does have a good starting pedigree that would serve him well in Carolina.

Carter should get another shot at being the starter long-term after his eye-catching series of performances down the stretch. But bringing in a player with a proven pedigree such as Vigil on the cheap wouldn’t be the worst move in the world by any stretch of the imagination.