6 remaining free agents with connections to Panthers GM Scott Fitterer

(San Francisco 49ers/Pool Photo via USA TODAY Network) Richard Sherman
(San Francisco 49ers/Pool Photo via USA TODAY Network) Richard Sherman /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Bruce Irvin /

Bruce Irvin – DE/OLB

  • 2020 team – Seattle Seahawks

It appears as if the Carolina Panthers could be set for impressive strides on their defensive front in 2021. Brian Burns now has more help than ever in the form of Haason Reddick and Yetur Gross-Matos, with the interior benefitting from two space-cloggers in Derrick Brown and free-agent signing DaQuan Jones.

That being said, there might be room on the roster for another rotational piece to go alongside Gross-Matos and Marquis Haynes. Providing Bruce Irvin has fully recovered from a serious knee injury that restricted him to just two games in 2020, he represents a nice piece to potentially come in and make a difference.

Irvin is no stranger to the Carolina Panthers or their new general manager Scott Fitterer.

The edge rusher was another first-round pick by the Seattle Seahawks when Fitterer was director of college scouting. Another home run from a man that made a lasting impression during Carolina’s draft process this year.

The former West Virginia star played for the Panthers in 2019 as a 3-4 outside linebacker, attaining 8.5 sacks, 36 pressures, and 16 quarterback hits from just 55 percent of the team’s defensive snaps.

This might be seen as a step backward for Carolina after deciding not to bring Irvin back last spring. However, there is no accounting for experience and the player might just be the missing piece on the Panthers’ rotation in 2021.