4 ways Carolina Panthers defense can make major progress in 2022

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Donte Jackson and Jaycee Horn
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Donte Jackson and Jaycee Horn /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Yetur Gross-Matos /

Young Carolina Panthers players must seize the moment

As stated previously, the Carolina Panthers took a calculated risk by letting a number of established figures on defense leave in free agency. Haason Reddick, DaQuan Jones, Stephon Gilmore, and Jermaine Carter all started in 2021 and are no longer around, meaning others make more of an impression right from the outset.

The Panthers invested heavily in their defensive players during the first offseason under Matt Rhule. They are loaded with young talent, but now is the time many must seize the moment and grasp the significant opportunity in front of them.

The likes of Yetur Gross-Matos and Marquis Haynes could be set for a surge in playing time given how little Carolina did to replace Reddick. Daviyon Nixon and Phil Hoskins could also be getting increased involvement on the defensive line interior despite the signing of Matt Ioannidis.

Frankie Luvu, Kenny Robinson, and C.J. Henderson could also benefit from the recent departures if their own progression goes well in training camp. It’s a big gamble for the Panthers to rely on these individuals all bringing on their talents, but the rewards could be substantial if everything comes together.

Obviously, not everyone is going to meet targets. But if the Panthers can get an upturn in production from most, their chances of defensive progression improve considerably.