4 Carolina Panthers players looking for redemption in 2024

These Carolina Panthers players are out for redemption in 2024.
Miles Sanders
Miles Sanders / Morgan Tencza-USA TODAY Sports
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Miles Sanders - Carolina Panthers RB

The Carolina Panthers were looking for another veteran running back last spring. Trading the league's best dual-threat backfield weapon - All-Pro Christian McCaffrey - to the San Francisco 49ers was a calculated risk. One that didn't pay off and became another proverbial nail in previous general manager Scott Fitterer's coffin.

McCaffrey's absence was felt sorely thanks to the subpar contribution of Miles Sanders. The former second-round pick signed for decent money after earning his first Pro Bowl selection with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2022. He looked like someone who could fill the void and become a genuine three-down threat within Frank Reich's scheme. This was his well-documented ambition after putting pen to paper.

To say this didn't go according to the script is an understatement.

Sanders dealt with a frustrating groin injury over the summer. The effects lingered into the regular season, which saw the Penn State product lose explosiveness. His on-field vision to spot gaps also came in for criticism from fans and the media alike.

The Panthers eventually placed Sanders on injured reserve. This was the opportunity Chuba Hubbard had been waiting for. Things immediately improved and the marquee free-agent addition became a bit-part player when medically cleared to resume football activities.

Many wondered if this would be a one-and-done situation for Sanders in Carolina. Dan Morgan parted ways with several established veterans he believed weren't worth the money. However, the running back got a surprising reprieve.

This is good news for Sanders, but his role isn't guaranteed by any stretch. The Panthers are expecting big things from rookie Jonathon Brooks after trading up for him at No. 46 overall in the 2024 NFL Draft. Hubbard and Raheem Blackshear are still around. Carolina also signed Rashaad Penny to increase competition for places.

Sanders seems highly motivated to right some wrongs. Dave Canales' intent to run the football heavily should help, but establishing himself fully is the only way confidence will rise regarding his chances in 2024.