5 big riddles Matt Rhule must solve at Panthers 2021 training camp

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Christian McCaffrey
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Christian McCaffrey /
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Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Jeremy Chinn /

How can the Carolina Panthers maximize Jeremy Chinn’s impact?

Jeremy Chinn is the sort of player who quickly becomes a coach’s dream. His athleticism, high football IQ, and dynamic ability came across almost instantly with the Carolina Panthers and something that resulted in a sensational rookie campaign from the Southern Illinois product.

This obviously came as an outside linebacker. A position Chinn wasn’t too familiar with before joining the Panthers.

Carolina is moving Chinn back to his preferred position of safety next season. Something that could mean there is more to come from the player in 2021.

Restricting Chinn to the backend isn’t the smart call to make. Although he is switching positions, the Panthers should give him the freedom to roam the field, be instinctive, and react in the sort of way we saw from the player in Year 1 of his professional career.

Think of Chinn as a more athletic Harrison Smith, the perennial Pro Bowler anchor for the Minnesota Vikings. Someone that can come down to the line of scrimmage to assist in run support and provide an additional boost in coverage should the situation dictate.

The Panthers got themselves a real diamond when they traded back into the second round for Chinn at No. 64 overall in the 2020 NFL Draft. He is a rare talent and should get more leeway than most when it comes to being reactive on the field when situations are developing.