5 underrated moves during the Carolina Panthers 2021 offseason

Dean Jones
(Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images) David Moore
(Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images) David Moore /
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Carolina Panthers
(Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) Dan Arnold /

Carolina Panthers signed Dan Arnold

Every successful NFL team needs a productive tight end to assist in the passing game. The Carolina Panthers almost took this for granted during the 2010s thanks to the outstanding production of Greg Olsen, who was another established veteran that the team sorely missed in 2020.

Letting Olsen leave for the Seattle Seahawks in free agency was a decision they’d like to have back in hindsight. Ian Thomas didn’t look like a No. 1 option last season and getting a potential upgrade was absolutely imperative for Carolina in their pursuit of progression next time around.

This arrived in the form of Dan Arnold, who is familiar with Joe Brady’s scheme and is coming off a career campaign with the Arizona Cardinals that eventually resulted in 31 receptions, 438 receiving yards, and four touchdowns.

Arnold is a smooth route runner that has the length to cause some real problems in the red zone. If he can build on the momentum generated last season and put it to good use in a different environment, it’s going to help new quarterback Sam Darnold tremendously.

Getting Arnold on a two-year deal with $4.5 million guaranteed could end up being a masterstroke by the Panthers. There should also be plenty of space for the player to work thanks to the presence of Christian McCaffrey in the backfield and multiple dynamic weapons at wide receiver.