4 remaining riddles the Carolina Panthers must solve ahead of 2022

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold /
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Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Yetur Gross-Matos /

Can the Carolina Panthers count on their pass rush?

After letting Haason Reddick and his 11 sacks walk out of the door in free agency, the Carolina Panthers are counting on some young guns to raise their contributions across the defensive line after doing little to address this need in free agency or the 2022 NFL Draft.

Brian Burns is the focal point after securing his first-ever Pro Bowl selection last season. The likes of Marquis Haynes and Yetur Gross-Matos will also be asked for more and there could be a part for Amare Barno to play on the rotation with a standout showing in training camp.

Carolina is a little light in this area, there’s no getting away from that. They do have the salary-cap space to make another move should the right opportunity come along, with Carlos Dunlap remaining on the radar following his visit during their mandatory minicamp.

Reddick did so much good work that went unnoticed. So it might have to be a collective effort in pursuit of coming close to his influence during the previous campaign.

Adopting a wait-and-see approach could cost Carolina in the long run. No team can ever have enough quality options when it comes to getting after the quarterback and general manager Scott Fitterer freely admitted this is something the Panthers are looking to bolster before the 2022 season.

The sooner a final decision is made, the better. And the Panthers could do far worse than going back to Dunlap based on his numbers from a rotational role last year.