5 eye-popping Carolina Panthers surprises at their 2022 bye week

(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Ikem Ekwonu
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Ikem Ekwonu /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) D’Onta Foreman /

D’Onta Foreman – Carolina Panthers RB

When the Carolina Panthers signed running back D’Onta Foreman to a one-year deal, fans were excited to see what the former Texas Longhorn could do alongside Christian McCaffrey. But despite performing well in relief of Derrick Henry with Tennessee Titans last season, Matt Rhule refused to use him in any capacity.

Before McCaffrey was traded to the San Francisco 49ers before the deadline, Foreman had just 12 carries for 37 rushing yards. From then on, the bruising back has been a revelation, totaling more than 100 rushing yards on four occasions on his way to 114 carries for 526 yards and four touchdowns.

This total is the league’s second-highest since Week 6. The Panthers running game has improved since McCaffrey was moved, which proves the point that running backs don’t need to be on extortionate contracts to succeed.

McCaffrey signed a four-year $67 million extension and has amassed 634 yards rushing. Foreman – who essentially didn’t start getting the ball until the midseason point – has 563 yards and is on a one-year, $2 million deal.

Heading into the offseason, extending Foreman should be a priority for general manager Scott Fitterer to keep him in Carolina for the foreseeable future.

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