5 surprising candidates to make the Panthers 53-man roster in 2021

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(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Spencer Brown
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Spencer Brown /
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Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Ishmael Hyman /

Ishmael Hyman – Carolina Panthers WR

There is an abundance of weapons for the Carolina Panthers to utilize at wide receiver despite losing Curtis Samuel to the Washington Football Team in free agency. Competition for targets is going to be fierce at training camp and one player has really caught the eye during the early part of the team’s offseason program.

It’s probably telling that Ishmael Hyman has stuck around on the fringes for so long. The former Tampa Bay Buccaneer narrowly missed out on the 53-man roster last summer, but his experience on the practice squad in 2020 should serve him well as the wideout looks to go one better this summer.

According to multiple reports from media in attendance at OTAs, Hyman was a standout contributor during OTAs and mandatory minicamp while others fighting for depth chart position didn’t shine nearly as brightly.

Much more will obviously be needed when the pads go on and things get a little more intense. But Hyman has built enough in the way of early momentum that could lead to a surprise roster inclusion in 2021.

Hyman’s production so far has given the Panthers food for thought. What comes next for the player will ultimately determine whether more responsibility comes his way next season.