5 questionable Carolina Panthers offseason moves in 2022

(Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) Matt Rhule
(Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) Matt Rhule /
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Carolina Panthers
(Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold /

Carolina Panthers kept faith with Sam Darnold?

All the talk this offseason surrounding what the Carolina Panthers were going to do at the quarterback position. Sam Darnold‘s production following his trade from the New York Jets blew up in their face and triggering his fifth-year option with a fully guaranteed $18.85 million seems more detrimental now than it did at the time.

Obviously, this has hindered Carolina’s pursuit of an upgrade. Although they did swing for the fences with trade bids for Deshaun Watson and Russell Wilson, which didn’t pay off in the end.

The Panthers also held discussions with the Cleveland Browns for Baker Mayfield before drafting Matt Corral at No. 94 overall, who does have some upside but will need to pick things up quickly in pursuit of challenging Darnold for the starting job.

This was probably the best-case scenario for Darnold.

Another chance to finally turn his failing career around.

If the Panthers move forward with Darold in the short term, it’s likely the leash will be much shorter this time around. Should the former USC standout once again become the weak link, then not bringing in a productive option as well as Corral will be a grave error of judgment.

Of course, Carolina does have the cap space to make a move if Darnold fails to show enough in front of Ben McAdoo. Something to keep a close eye on during offseason workouts given the offensive coordinator’s comments about the signal-caller during his pre-draft assessment.