5 calls the Panthers should make first when free agency opens

(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) Jonnu Smith
(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) Jonnu Smith /
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Carolina Panthers
(Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports) Trai Turner /

Carolina Panthers call Trai Turner

The Los Angeles Chargers decided to cut ties with Pro Bowl guard Trai Turner after just one season after they acquired him from the Carolina Panthers in exchange for Russell Okung. Both veterans now find themselves on the free-agent market just a few months removed from the deal, which could result in a possible return if there is a mutual interest between both parties.

It’s easy to forget that Turner is still just 27-years-old. Staying healthy was a real problem for the former third-round pick in 2020 and whether the Panthers want to bring in a less dependable option on their interior protection from a health perspective is up for debate.

However, there might be an opportunity that is hard to pass up here.

Turner is no stranger to the organization and was a much-loved teammate. The roster looks far different from the one he left. But this familiarity with the surroundings and the fact he might be willing to take an incentivized deal could work in Carolina’s favor.

The Panthers didn’t get much in the way of solid consistency from Chris Reed and John Miller in Turner’s absence. So giving him a call to see if he’d be interested in a return to the team at far less of a financial commitment is worth considering.

If Turner decides to wait until some additional offers come in, the Panthers can look elsewhere quickly. The free-agent class for interior linemen is getting deeper by the day with veteran cuts, so there might be some value available to them.