4 free agents the Carolina Panthers should call to replace Pat Elflein

(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Pat Elflein
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Pat Elflein /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Russell Okung /

Russell Okung – Former Carolina Panthers OT

Okay, there is a method to my madness here.

The Carolina Panthers need help on the interior following Pat Elflein’s injury. One could argue this was still in need of an upgrade even with the former third-round pick in the lineup.

Another area of potential complication comes at left tackle. Cam Erving has shown signs of frailty, which wasn’t unexpected considering his level of production since entering the league.

One thing that’s notable when examining Erving’s performance is he might be better suited to one of the guard spots. Russell Okung is familiar with the scheme after an injury-riddled stint with the Panthers last season, but he was a solid presence on the blindside when on the field.

Okung is still waiting for the right opportunity after Carolina decided not to bring the Pro Bowler back following his trade from the Los Angeles Chargers last spring.

A tackle-guard tandem of Okung and Erving would be far more beneficial to the Panthers than anything they have currently. But much will depend on whether the experienced figure has any interest in returning to the fold.

Keeping Okung healthy was a big problem in 2020. Something that didn’t go unnoticed by those in power when deciding who to extend or release.