6 burning questions Panthers fans are asking after Matt Rhule’s firing

(Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports) Matt Rhule
(Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports) Matt Rhule /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Christian McCaffrey /

Should the Carolina Panthers clean house?

What pick(s) could Carolina realistically get in a trade for Christian McCaffrey? – Matt

Thank you for your question, Matt. I think this question can be pertinent to the discussion of whether or not the Carolina Panthers should clean the house and start from scratch.

Let’s begin with Christian McCaffrey. Trading him now would add a dead cap of $27.1 million and only an $8.7 million cap hit. Sending him elsewhere in 2023 would save $19.5 million with a dead cap of $18.3 million.

I would estimate the draft capital that Carolina could acquire in return would be either a Day 2 selection or at best a first-round pick. However, the contract is the biggest issue and the Panthers have already made it clear that they have no plans of trading the All-Pro running back.

As for the rest of the roster, it’s not a bad group by any means. Sure, some moves will have to be made for Carolina to be in a somewhat favorable position in terms of draft capital and money. Even so, there are foundational pieces the Panthers can build around, especially if a rookie quarterback is in play next season.

Coming into the season, Carolina’s roster looked much improved, especially on the offensive line. That’s an area where the team has succeeded and line coach James Campen is a big part of their improvements thus far.

With the right coaches and a rookie prospect under center, this is a roster that can do serious damage to opponents in the coming years.

I understand and respect the aspect of wanting to tear it all down. However, we’ll have to agree to disagree with this philosophy for the time being.

With current and future stars such as Brian Burns, Jaycee Horn, Ikem Ekwonu, and D.J. Moore, this is an organization worth retooling more than anything. Especially with the better coaching and a new quarterback, if that comes to fruition.