6 Panthers players fighting for their jobs following 2022 NFL Draft

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Sam Darnold
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Sam Darnold /
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(Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports) Joe Jackson /

5. player. 87. . DE. Carolina Panthers. JOE JACKSON

Joe Jackson – Carolina Panthers DE

Defensive coordinator Phil Snow signaled out Joe Jackson for praise during his recent media availability, touting the defensive end as someone that could potentially come in and make an immediate contribution for the Carolina Panthers.

This will undoubtedly be needed after the team lost gifted pass-rusher Haason Reddick. Those in power decided to let the former first-round pick test the free-agent market after 11 sacks in 2021, which promptly saw the player sign a lucrative deal with the Philadelphia Eagles soon after the legal tampering period began.

Reddick’s departure leaves a gaping hole opposite Brian Burns that the Panthers will hope to fill with Yetur Gross-Matos, Marquis Haynes, or even Jackson providing the recent signing transitions well to a different environment.

The former fifth-round pick out of Miami caught the eye on occasions during limited reps with the Cleveland Browns in 2021, gaining 1.5 sacks, 16 tackles, three quarterback hits, three tackles for loss, and three pressures from 21 percent of the team’s defensive snaps.

Jackson has the quickness and physicality that Carolina likes in their defensive linemen. But it’s important the player generates some early momentum to cement his status on the rotation and there is now additional competition in the form of Amre Barno to also factor into the equation.