3 potential trade partners for Panthers OLB Shaq Thompson

(Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images) Shaq Thompson
(Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images) Shaq Thompson /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Shaq Thompson /

Buffalo Bills

If there was one weakness on the Buffalo Bills in 2020, it was within their linebacker corps. They didn’t get much in the way of consistent production from their edge players at the second level and Shaq Thompson could solve a lot of their problems if the Carolina Panthers made him available for trade.

There is the obvious connection of former Panthers players, coaches, and front office personnel in Buffalo that would ensure a smooth transition for Thompson. Carolina’s former defensive coordinator Sean McDermott got the best of the former Washington standout before getting a deserved promotion with the Bills, so this switch makes a ton of sense.

The benefits are clear and obvious. But the financial implications regarding such a possibility are something that cannot be overlooked in the current climate.

Buffalo has just $4.5 million in salary-cap space before sacrifices are made ahead of free agency. Taking Thompson’s contract on would be a big commitment for the AFC title contenders, who are looking to go one better next time around and reach the Super Bowl once again.

The Bills don’t have any trouble making bold decisions in the trade market, as was the case last year when they acquired Stefon Doiggs from the Minnesota Vikings. Thompson would no doubt welcome a reunion with McDermott, which might even see the outside linebacker return to the form of old.