5 franchise tag deadline moves that should interest Panthers

(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) Malcolm Butler
(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) Malcolm Butler /
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Carolina Panthers
(Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports) Joe Thuney /

Joe Thuney wasn’t tagged

Considering the New England Patriots have plenty of salary-cap space at their disposal, it was something of a surprise to see them not use the franchise tag on Joe Thurney. The interior offensive lineman is one of the best in the business and is going to be one of the hottest commodities in free agency when the time comes.

Thuney has everything one looks for in a supreme guard. He is powerful at the point of attack, has exceptional footwork in pass protection, and can pave nice lanes in the running game with minimal fuss.

Another standout feature of Thuney’s game is his versatility, which is something the Carolina Panthers looked for in almost every new recruit last year. The All-Pro can play every position across the line of scrimmage and has conceded just three penalties over the last three seasons.

This discipline was sorely lacking in Carolina last season. Although this move is likely to cost quite a bit in terms of financial outlay, it has the potential to be extremely beneficial.

As stated previously, Thuney won’t be short of suitors when the legal tampering period opens next week. So whether the Panthers are an attractive option for the player at this stage of their rebuild is up for debate.

However, this would undoubtedly be a great bit of business from Carolina’s perspective and one that is sure to bring instant results on the field.