11 underrated moves the Carolina Panthers made in 2023 offseason

Scott Fitterer
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Carolina Panthers signed Vonn Bell

Transitioning to a 3-4 base defense under the exceptional defensive mind of Ejiro Evero comes with tremendous intrigue. But the Carolina Panthers also needed some personnel changes to ensure this landmark scheme alteration goes off without a hitch.

This all starts with communication. Something the Panthers bolstered by signing free-agent safety Vonn Bell to a three-year, $22.5 million deal that also included a $5.83 million signing bonus and $13 million guaranteed.

Bell is a dependable veteran that always seems to be in the right position. His partnership with Xavier Woods on the backend should flourish immediately and the former Ohio State star is guaranteed to have every member of the secondary in the correct positions pre-snap for good measure.

Carolina Panthers didn't cut Shaq Thompson

It seems like a distant memory now, but there was a time earlier this offseason when Shaq Thompson's future with the Panthers was in doubt. The linebacker's salary cap hit meant he was a primary cut candidate, but a compromise ended up being reached to ensure he got the chance to be part of the new regime.

Thompson extended his contract by one season with no extra money attached. This team-first move came as a result of the current linebacker market around the league and the former Washington star's desire to spend the rest of his career in Carolina.

This is outstanding news. Thompson will be a primary influencer within Ejiro Evero's 3-4 defense alongside Frankie Luvu on the defensive second-level interior, with his presence as Carolna's undisputed locker room leader something else that cannot be overlooked.