4 free agents the Carolina Panthers have missed out on so far

(Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports) Shaquil Griffin
(Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports) Shaquil Griffin /
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Carolina Panthers
(Syndication: Indianapolis) Denico Autry /

Denico Autry – DT

The Carolina Panthers also took a big swing at defensive tackle Denico Autry before he took an offer from the Tennessee Titans, who look in a better position to contend in the postseason currently. This is a glaring need for the organization after they took the surprise decision to release Zach Kerr, who performed well in 2020 and was one of the team’s highest-graded players by Pro Football Focus.

This leaves the Panthers with just Derrick Brown and Bravvion Roy as realistic options, with three-technique Efe Obada also heading into the free-agent market.

Getting someone with proven qualities such as Autry on board would have been a shrewd move, of that there is little doubt. But whether they put the cart before the horse and cut Kerr without securing a replacement doesn’t look like the wisest idea in the world and especially as it saved them just $1.3 million in salary-cap space.

Autry was highly productive in 2020 on his way to nine sacks. He has the versatility to play on the interior or even off the edge if required, which is obviously something Carolina sought heavily in their recruitment process last time out.

It was a swing and a miss. Autry joins a Tennessee team that is looking to get over the all-important hump and to an AFC Championship after a couple of near-misses, although they’ve lost some influential pieces themselves in recent days.