4 Panthers players who could boost their trade value in 2021

Dean Jones
(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) Shaq Thompson
(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images) Shaq Thompson /
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Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Shaq Thompson /

Shaq Thompson – Carolina Panthers OLB

There was some doubt as to whether Shaq Thompson would still be on the roster in 2021. The outside linebacker had an up and down season for the Carolina Panthers last time out and considering the big pay rise coming his way, he was seen as a potential candidate for release or trade.

Instead, the former first-round pick agreed to a contract restructure – saving the Panthers some crucial funds this spring to strengthen problem areas in the current climate.

This doesn’t mean Thompson is a lock to be part of Carolina’s plans down the line.

A trade post-June 1 next year saves the Panthers just over $12 million in salary-cap space, according to Over the Cap. If the Washington product produces the goods with better options around him, there might be a suitor willing to take the player on.

It was evident last season that Thompson needs someone of real quality alongside him at the inside linebacker spot to thrive.

His deficiencies were exposed in the immediate aftermath of Luke Kuechly’s retirement, so how Denzel Perryman performs is going to have a knock-on effect where Thompson is concerned.

Getting a draft pick in return for Thompson next year might be a good call to make considering how strong the class of 2022 is expected to be. But the player must show enough on the field to generate possible interest.