4 immediate offseason objectives for the Carolina Panthers in 2023

(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Scott Fitterer
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Scott Fitterer /
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What immediate objectives must the Carolina Panthers get to grips with during what promises an important 2023 offseason for the franchise?

After a rollercoaster 2022 season, the Carolina Panthers can go into 2023 with optimism, knowing they have a plethora of draft picks, good core pieces, and a growing culture around the locker room.

However, this does not mean the organization can take a day off. Especially given how many important decisions await those in power before OTAs begin.

In some ways, Carolina’s offseason has already begun, and it is the time of year when teams around the league either improve or decline. And make no mistake, the Panthers need to hit some major home runs after missing the playoffs for a fifth straight season.

To avoid becoming a cellar dweller, the Panthers have objectives entering the Spring that they must accomplish. Here are four immediate priorities that must be addressed effectively.

Objective No. 1

Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Scott Fitterer /

Carolina Panthers must clear cap space

The Carolina Panthers have a few areas where they need to improve. Trading for and signing players is the best way to get better. To make those moves, they need cap space.

Carolina ranks 23rd in available cap space entering the offseason despite the lack of big contracts on their roster. That is because of $28.6 million in dead-cap from the Christian McCaffrey and Robbie Anderson trades.

That leaves the Panthers with approximately $1.7 million available. That will not be enough to re-sign Bradley Bozeman and D’Onta Foreman, not to mention any free-agent targets they are likely to pursue. What that means is cuts and contract restructuring will have to take place.

There could be some surprise cuts for the Panthers. Players like Damien Wilson, Stantley Thomas-Oliver, Chandler Woolten, Larnel Coleman, and Keith Taylor Jr. are likely options to be released.

If the Panthers were to cut all of these players, that would open 7.2 million in cap space. Not to mention contract restructuring that Carolina can do to free up further funds.

Whatever general manager Scott Fitterer decides to do, one thing is for sure – they have to create cap room to retain and acquire more talent.