Could the Carolina Panthers give up on Terrace Marshall Jr.?
By Dean Jones
Could the Carolina Panthers give up on wide receiver and 2021 second-round pick Terrace Marshall Jr. after just one season with the team?
There is a growing sense of frustration surrounding wide receiver Terrace Marshall Jr. The Carolina Panthers got another indicator of what the former second-round pick could do following an outstanding start to camp, but more injury issues have hindered the player’s progress at just the wrong time.
Marshall did see the field during Carolina’s preseason finale against the Buffalo Bills, where he failed to bring in his only target. With the likes of Rashard Higgins and Shi Smith coming to the fore in the biggest way possible, things look bleak for the LSU product regarding significant involvement next time around.
Joe Person of The Athletic recently reported that the Panthers had also called the New York Jets about a potential trade for Denzel Mims, who worked closely with head coach Matt Rhule previously from their time together at Baylor. The same writer also made a bold prediction for his final 53-man roster prediction by leaving Marshall off the list entirely.
Carolina Panthers would be making a mistake by letting Terrace Marshall Jr. leave
This would be an extraordinary turn of events. Marshall was taken at No. 59 overall in the 2021 NFL Draft, so to give up on him after just one season is a major call to make.
Things didn’t go well for Marshall last season. Injuries played their part, but the wideout’s inability to create separation meant targets were at a premium and he was also a healthy scratch for Carolina’s game at the Miami Dolphins before their bye week.
Rhule’s patience was wearing thin with Marshall after he missed another portion of practices. Health is a real issue for the player and the Panthers have too much at stake in 2022 to be carrying passengers.
Considering the Panthers passed up legitimate talent at positions of need in favor of Marshall, cutting ties so soon into the player’s career would be nothing short of a disaster. There is an undeniable talent, but something is just not right and it will be interesting to see which way this goes in the coming days.
A recent article from Eric Edholm over at NFL.com listed Marshall as a potential trade candidate ahead of final cuts. But the lead draft analyst also highlighted the hastiness of such a decision considering how highly regarded he was by the Panthers during their assessment.
"“A trade might be a bit of a dramatic step to take at this stage, unless the Panthers truly don’t believe Marshall can overcome the health issues that apparently have followed him from LSU to Charlotte. Other Panthers receivers, including Shi Smith and Rashard Higgins, have stepped up in Marshall’s absence. But is it enough to convince GM Scott Fitterer to trade away one of his first Carolina draft picks?”"
Cutting Marshall will cost the Panthers around $1.3 million in dead-cap money with no savings. Trading the receiver gives them $920,431 extra to spend with a dead figure of just $381,724.
Which way the Panthers eventually go remains to be seen. It’s hard to envisage a scenario where Carolina’s primary decision-makers remove him entirely from the equation, but if they manage to acquire Mims then it’s a completely different story.
Marshall won’t last long on the waiver wire before another team swoops in this scenario. And knowing the Panthers’ luck, he’ll likely thrive elsewhere.