Grading every Panthers positional group after Week 1 of free agency
By Noah Bryce
The Carolina Panthers have made some good and some questionable moves this offseason, but where does that leave them at each position?
Free agency is now one-week in and the Carolina Panthers still have the majority of their offseason cap space available to spend. While the team has made some surprise signings in edge rusher Hasson Reddick and offensive lineman Pat Elflein, there hasn’t been all that much activity.
This relative inactivity has been a bit of a head-scratcher considering the holes that need to be filled on either side of the football. The bouncing between messages of being “in on every deal” and “taking a patient approach” haven’t helped either.
There has speculation surrounding free agents shunning the Panthers for one reason or another and whether or not those reports are true, the image is still a problem that needs to be dealt with quickly. Even a rumor can ruin a reputation and once that’s gone it puts the team at a huge disadvantage come recruiting time.
There is also the current climate to consider when saying anything about this year’s free agency. With a falling cap followed by an expected skyrocket next offseason, players are looking for short-term or voidable deals that will allow them to cash in next year.
A smart idea for them, but it puts teams in a hard balance of signing people to win without mortgaging their future with deals for players that they have no chance of signing in 2022.
It is a tough offseason across the league for new and experienced general managers alike and while new appointment Scott Fitterer has certainly made some magic happen, there have also been a fair amount of moves that have irritated the fanbase.
Hopefully, they can see something that the fans cannot, and these moves will have us all smiles come next season. But at this point, it doesn’t necessarily look the best in some key areas.
With that being said, let’s take a look at the current state of each position after the big names have been signed during the first week of free agency.