6 free agents in problem areas the Panthers should sign pre-camp

(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) Olivier Vernon
(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) Olivier Vernon /
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Carolina Panthers
(Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports) Malik Hooker /

Malik Hooker – S

  • 2020 team – Indianapolis Colts

We’ve been beating this drum for a while now. But there is absolutely no harm in the Carolina Panthers bringing in Malik Hooker for a visit, at the very least.

The safety’s talent is absolutely undeniable when he’s fit and firing on all cylinders. Hooker dealt with some injury problems in 2020 that he is reportedly still working his way back from, so whether that is putting teams off from taking the plunge is up for debate.

At least from the outside looking in, Hooker and the Panthers appear to be a perfect match.

He is athletic, can get around the field quickly, and has a knack for making things happen in crucial moments.

Considering the Panthers have little in the way of depth behind starting duo Jeremy Chinn and Juston Burris, acquiring another safety that can slot in at a moment’s notice would be highly desirable.

Hooker has visited a few teams this offseason without securing a deal. It’s hard to envisage a situation where the Indianapolis Colts wouldn’t have kept him around had he been healthy, so their loss will be someone else’s gain if the Ohio State product returns to the player of old.

As for the Panthers, there’s no harm in putting in a call. And who knows, the benefits could be substantial.