5 huge concerns facing the Carolina Panthers in Week 1 vs. Browns

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Matt Rhule
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Matt Rhule /
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What are some major concerns facing the Carolina Panthers ahead of their Week 1 clash against the Cleveland Browns at Bank of America Stadium?

It’s time for the Carolina Panthers to begin their 2022 season at long last. Their much-anticipated encounter against the Cleveland Browns is a chance to get things trending in the right direction after two years of underachievement under Matt Rhule, which also provides Baker Mayfield with an instant opportunity for revenge versus the team that traded him away.

There will be an electric atmosphere and renewed hope. Carolina has the talent to make improvements and Rhule also possesses experienced coaches across the board that can assist him in times of trouble – so everything is seemingly in place to improve.

The Browns won’t want to be embarrassed by Mayfield, so they’ll be giving it all despite the absence of Deshaun Watson through suspension. Poor weather forecasts also add another layer of fascination to the contest, which is a game not to miss for even the most casual NFL fan.

Hopes are high, but here are some huge concerns surrounding the Panthers in Week 1.

Huge Concern No. 1

Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Ikem Ekwonu /

Will Carolina Panthers OT Ikem Ekwonu rise to the challenge?

Things will not be easy for Ikem Ekwonu on his regular-season debut. The Carolina Panthers are expecting their No. 6 overall selection to become the team’s franchise left tackle, but facing Myles Garrett in Week 1 could bring around some significant complications.

Garrett is arguably the league’s best pass-rusher, boasting a supreme blend of size, athleticism, and power. Ekwonu has his work cut out keeping him quiet, but the Panthers could also provide the rookie with assistance depending on how he fares right out of the gate.

This is a challenge Ekwonu must be ready for. A matchup that will go a long way to determining the overall outcome.