3 trade packages the Panthers could offer for stud LB Roquan Smith

(Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports) Roquan Smith
(Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports) Roquan Smith /
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Carolina Panthers trade offer No. 2

Why not attempt to pull off the ultimate “my problem for your problem” trade?

For the Carolina Panthers, this moves the team off of Sam Darnold, giving the Chicago Bears a chance to shift Robert Quinn and get a huge return for Roquan Smith for good measure.  It is important to note that this trade only works if the organization agrees to still pay a portion of the quarterback’s fully guaranteed $18.85 million in 2022, which could leave them significantly short of funds in the short term.

However, the team is in a make-or-break season. So why not go all in on the defense?

You’re unlikely to draft a player as talented as Smith with your first-round pick. This scenario also provides the Panthers with a productive pass-rusher, which is something they desperately need after letting Haason Reddick leave in free agency for the Philadelphia Eagles.

Parting ways with a first-round pick isn’t easy. But it solves two problems for Carolina and gives Matt Rhule a chance to save his job.

The Panthers might not be the only team that would offer a first-rounder for Smith despite his contract status. Convincing the Bears to take on Darnold as a backup to Justin Fields is a tough sell whichever way one looks at it.

The Bears will acquire a coveted first-round pick and add a bit of non-threatening quarterback depth behind Fields. Not a bad return considering this franchise is clearly in a rebuilding phase.