Which free agents from the AFC North could be targets for the Carolina Panthers in the coming weeks?
It’s going to be an eventful offseason period for the Carolina Panthers, to put it mildly. The decisions made by the front office and head coach Matt Rhule in the coming weeks will shape the future of the franchise, which is undoubtedly centering around securing a new quarterback after Teddy Bridgewater failed to make the most out of another starting opportunity in 2020.
The Panthers need to make some maneuvers to free up additional funds to spend in free agency. There is also the small matter of deciding which current roster members to keep around, with almost half out of contract this spring.
Another preparation period of substantial player turnover awaits. The introduction of new general manager Scott Fitterer will almost guarantee this and providing Carolina can build on the talented young core at their disposal, then it might just make them a force to be reckoned with next time around.
Getting the right sort of free agents is going to be crucial to the Panthers’ fortunes, in addition to striking gold with their NFL Draft selections once again after a strong series of selections in 2020.
With this in mind, here are some players from the AFC North that Carolina could acquire in pursuit of making a postseason push in 2021.
Player No. 1
Yannick Ngakoue – DE
- 2020 team – Baltimore Ravens
It was an eventful 2020 season for Yannick Ngakoue, who began with the Jacksonville Jaguars and ended with the Baltimore Ravens via a six-game stint as part of the Minnesota Vikings. The defensive end faces an uncertain future this offseason and if the Carolina Panthers can get a good deal for the player in free agency, it is well worth considering.
Ngakoue has all the physical attributes Matt Rhule loves in a player. There are some concerns about his disruptive presence within the locker room. But if this season has taught him anything, it’s that fortunes and perception can change at the drop of a hat.
Whether Ngakoue will get top-dollar on the free-agent market at this juncture is up for debate. He’ll probably be in the second-tier of players in this regard, but the upside is high with some extra motivation.