4 biggest surprises of Carolina Panthers 2023 free agency so far

Scott Fitterer
Scott Fitterer / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
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Carolina Panthers
Jaycee Horn / Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Carolina Panthers haven't signed a veteran CB

Perhaps the most glaring need ignored by the Carolina Panthers throughout the early stages of free agency is within their cornerback room. There are just too many questions to go into the upcoming campaign for the team to stand pat, although this is likely to change before OTAs and training camp roll around. 

Donte Jackson will stick around after restructuring his contract. Keith Taylor Jr. and C.J. Henderson have also avoided the chop, which wouldn't have happened if defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero wasn't confident he could get more out of the underperforming duo. 

The Panthers have one constant in Jaycee Horn, who emerged into a true shutdown presence in 2022 despite some slight complications on the injury front. However, given the need for Carolina to hit the ground running under their new regime, ignoring some of the more productive corners on the free-agent market might come back to haunt them. 

Again, the Panthers might have identified a cornerback prospect to take in Round No. 2 of the 2023 NFL Draft once their quarterback of choice is acquired. Myles Hartsfield's departure in free agency - reuniting with Steve Wilks on the San Francisco 49ers - means Carolina's depth is also a major issue looking at their current options. 

As stated previously, there is money available to make another move or two. Something that is needed considering Jackson's torn Achilles and the length of time he could miss.