5 most underrated Carolina Panthers players heading into 2021

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Donte Jackson
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Donte Jackson /
1 of 6
Carolina Panthers
(Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports) David Moore /

Who are the most underrated Carolina Panthers players heading into a pivotal 2021 season for the franchise and their head coach Matt Rhule?

The Carolina Panthers might have some exciting young players to call upon next season, but most analysts are expecting the team to go through some significant struggles once again in 2021. Much of this has to do with quarterback Sam Darnold and the protection in front of him, which could go either way in terms of success or failure.

This is the route Carolina chose to go down once they decided Teddy Bridgewater wasn’t the man to lead them moving forward. The Panthers are banking on Darnold doing better with prolific weapons around him, even if there isn’t much production over the last three years to suspect the signal-caller is capable of such drastic improvement.

That being said, it was a successful offseason in terms of recruitment following the arrival of new general manager Scott Fitterer. Especially when one considers how tight things were financially thanks to a shrinking salary cap.

Carolina now has to put it all together when it counts.

They were praised for being competitive against some outstanding teams in 2020. But their failure to get over the line was an indictment of the team’s lack of experience both on the field and throughout the coaching staff.

Progression is expected next time around. Here are the five most underrated Panthers players heading into the 2021 season.