3 Panthers position groups that must step up vs. NY Jets in Week 1

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Taylor Moton
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Taylor Moton /
2 of 3
Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Taylor Moton /

Carolina Panthers OL

Even though the New York Jets lost Carl Lawson to a season-ending injury last month, they still sport a young, but talented crew led by Quinnen Williams in their base 4-3 scheme.

This unit is capable of wreaking havoc as three interior linemen ranked among the top 35 last season and defensive line coach Aaron Whitecotton has plenty of depth to keep his guys fresh.

The Carolina Panthers offensive line is filled with questions and has been a talking point in many water cooler conversations recently. This may be the weakest unit on the offense, but one that is vital to the success of the team.

Games are won and lost at the line of scrimmage and if this Panthers team has playoff aspirations, the offensive line will need to play at a high level.

Fresh off signing a $72 million extension, Taylor Moton will anchor the right side of the line alongside backup Dennis Daley who is filling in for John Miller after the starter was placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list.

At 31-years-old, center Matt Paradis is in the final year of his contract and needs to gel with quarterback Sam Darnold for quick and efficient exchanges while communicating well with the other protectors at the line of scrimmage.

The left side will be held down by newcomers Cameron Erving and Pat Elflein. Outside of Moton, this group leaves many nervous about their ability to protect Darnold in passing situations or their potential to contain the Jets’ line from penetrating into the backfield.