4 Panthers who will benefit most from free-agent signings so far

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Brian Burns
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Brian Burns /
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Carolina Panthers
(Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports) Dan Arnold /

Which Carolina Panthers players could stand to benefit most from their early activity in 2021 free agency?

It was clear that frustrations were building with some sections of the Carolina Panthers’ fanbase on the opening day of free agency. While other teams were making big splashes with some exceptional talent, the organization chose to announce suspect offensive linemen in Cam Erving and Pat Elflein as their first two recruits which didn’t exactly go down too well.

Thankfully, this hasn’t set the tone for what came next.

General manager Scott Fitterer has managed to make several key additions on the defensive side of the ball, in addition to a pair of nice pickups to boost their passing options with the departure of Curtis Samuel to the Washington Football Team. This has not cost Carolina much in the way of financial outlay, which might mean the franchise makes some additional moves that could see them in a position to take the best player available in the 2021 NFL Draft.

It’s a good start to free agency for the Panthers. However, some key positional groups definitely need some refinement if they want to realistically enter the postseason discussion in 2021.

One thing is for sure, things look much more promising for Carolina than they did this time last year. This is an organization clearly heading in the right direction and if they can nail further personnel moves, it’s going to stand them in enormously good stead.

On this topic, we took a look at four Panthers players who might benefit the most from the signings made during free agency so far.

Player No. 1

Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Shaq Thompson /

Shaq Thompson – Carolina Panthers OLB

It’s clear that Shaq Thompson needs a solid linebacker alongside him on the interior to maximize performance. The former first-round pick felt the retirement of Luke Kuechly more than most and although there has been plenty of speculation surrounding his future, the restructuring of his contract ensures he’ll be around in 2021.

The Panthers did Thompson a massive favor by signing Denzel Perryman in free agency. He is a big-hitting, intelligent presence at the second level who’s really caught the eye with the Los Angeles Chargers. So if he can make even more of an impact in Carolina, it should also bring the best out of the Washington product in the process.

With Jermaine Carter’s impressive displays over the second half of the campaign ensuring he’ll get a big role next time around, things are looking up for a unit that went through some struggles last season.