5 best offseason moves made by the Carolina Panthers in 2021

Dean Jones
(Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images) Jaycee Horn
(Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images) Jaycee Horn /
4 of 5
Carolina Panthers
(Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports) Teddy Bridgewater /

Trading Teddy Bridgewater

It’s fine to make mistakes.

But how you put them right is key.

The Carolina Panthers clearly made their mind up about Teddy Bridgewater long before he was mercifully benched in their Week 17 finale against the New Orleans Saints. His lack of confidence was glaring and this was matched by a simple failure to get things done with the game on the line.

Something the Panthers could not rely on moving forward.

They were extremely aggressive in their search for a potential upgrade on Bridgewater. Matthew Stafford came within inches of their grasp and had Deshaun Watson not encountered some serious legal complications prior to the NFL Draft, the former Clemson star might be wearing a Panthers uniform right now.

Carolina eventually settled on Sam Darnold and is betting on his potential being the catalyst for better production with far superior talent around him.

This may or may not work out.

However, moving ahead with Bridgewater could have been even more damaging.

Cutting their losses and sending the former first-round pick to the Denver Broncos came at a substantial financial cost. But it’s going to look incredibly smart if Darnold leads the Panthers to bigger things in 2021.