5 Panthers players who could be cut before 2021 training camp

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Darius Clark and Mason Stokke
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Darius Clark and Mason Stokke /
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Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Darius Clark /

Darius Clark – Carolina Panthers RB

The Carolina Panthers have plenty of options at running back heading into training camp. Christian McCaffrey’s return to full health after a frustrating 2020 season is going to be a massive plus, with the organization also spending a fourth-round pick on Oklahoma State product Chuba Hubbard in case the worst happens to their All-Pro once again.

Rodney Smith showed some promise with the carries that came his way last season. Reggie Bonnafon is also back following injury and there is some intrigue surrounding undrafted free-agent Spencer Brown after a strong start at voluntary OTAs.

Carolina shouldn’t take more than three running backs onto the 53-man roster, at least initially. This might become four if Trenton Cannon is designated as their kick returner, which is no guarantee at this juncture.

This obviously leaves someone like Darius Clark on the outside looking in. He is a big back at 6-foot-2 who earned a spot on the 90-man roster after impressing at a HUB camp, which was set up for prospects who were largely overlooked by league scouts.

If the right player becomes available elsewhere in the coming weeks that the Panthers think might strengthen their options during the season, then it might see them release Clark and go with some obvious stronger options at their disposal.