5 shining stars from the Carolina Panthers win at Texans in Week 3

(Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports) Tommy Tremble
(Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports) Tommy Tremble /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Shaq Thompson /

Shaq Thompson – Carolina Panthers OLB

In some ways, Shaq Thompson had something to prove this season. As is the case with most starters on defense, the outside linebacker is off to a superb start.

Thompson’s been a relentless force at the second level and is clearly benefitting from improved talent around him in 2021. Last season was a disappointing one overall for the player, but he’s been nothing short of phenomenal through the first three games of the campaign.

As one of the team’s longest-serving players, Thompson has increased responsibility this time around. Something he struggled to cope with on occasions in 2020 in the immediate aftermath of Luke Kuechly’s shock retirement.

Thompson is leading from the front and inspiring others around him with outstanding production and a different mentality. Generating momentum and a winning culture certainly helps and the former Washington stud deserves nothing but praise for the way he’s applied himself this season so far.

With six tackles, one tackle for loss, and two quarterback hits, Thompson made a real difference at the Houston Texans and the Carolina Panthers need this and perhaps more in Week 4 at the Dallas Cowboys as they look to extend their perfect start to the campaign.