5 potentially grave errors made by the Carolina Panthers this offseason

(Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports) Justin Fields
(Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports) Justin Fields /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Matt Rhule /

What are some potential mistakes made by the Carolina Panthers as their initial 53-man roster was confirmed this week?

A dramatic offseason period for the Carolina Panthers is now in its final stages ahead of the 2021 season. The team formed their initial 53-man roster on Tuesday, bringing in one more from the waiver wire and securing some young talent on their practice squad just 24 hours later.

Scott Fitterer wasted no time stamping his mark on the organization after replacing Marty Hurney as general manager. He is keen to implement the same values that proved so successful on the Seattle Seahawks, building a formidable defense and through the draft in pursuit of real progress next season and possibly beyond.

There’s been plenty of player turnover throughout the preparation period. Although the options at Matt Rhule’s disposal look stronger than last year, some opportunities did pass them by.

With this in mind, here are five potentially grave errors made by the Panthers this offseason.

Grave Error No. 1

Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Joey Slye /

Carolina Panthers didn’t have a true kicking competition

Joey Slye’s indifferent production in 2020 meant it was a surprise to see the Panthers give him an extension. On top of this, they didn’t even put pressure on the kicker by having a true competition in training camp.

Their confidence in Slye was misplaced. The West Virginia product was wayward in preseason games and clearly struggling to find the right mindset, forcing Carolina into a trade with the New York Giants to secure Ryan Santoso.

Slye was inevitably released as a result. Whether this rushed and forced late change pays off is another matter entirely.