5 major storylines to monitor at Panthers mandatory minicamp in 2022

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Ikem Ekwonu and Cade Mays
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Ikem Ekwonu and Cade Mays /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Self/Florida Times-Union via IMAGN Content Services) Damien Wilson /

Can the Carolina Panthers count on Damien Wilson?

After a turbulent offseason for Damien Wilson, the linebacker is probably relieved to focus a little more on football rather than his issues off the field.

The former Super Bowl winner was an exciting pickup by the Carolina Panthers in free agency. This is set to provide the player with a chance to become the team’s long-awaited successor to the legendary Luke Kuechly if everything clicks into place.

Unfortunately for Wilson, a concerning arrest and subsequent allegations may lead to some complications away from the gridiron in the not-too-distant future. The Panthers’ front office will be monitoring the situation closely, but the coaching staff must also look at his production during the upcoming mandatory minicamp to decipher whether he can be relied upon in 2022.

Finding someone that can replicate Kuechly’s overall impact is impossible, in all honesty. Wilson does have some impressive attributes – especially on running downs – and he represents a better option than the recently departed Jermaine Carter, who eventually signed for the Kansas City Chiefs.

If Wilson struggles and there is enough information to bring charges against the second-level defender, then a scenario could emerge where he doesn’t play for the Panthers. This would be a disaster before such an important season.