Which Carolina Panthers players outperformed their pay grade during an otherwise disastrous 2023 campaign for the franchise?
Nobody will remember the 2023 season with any great fondness if you're a Carolina Panthers fan. Most were looking forward to the offseason long before their games concluded. The whole thing was a complete embarrassment with very few positives attached.
The Panthers are hitting the reset button once again. General manager and head coaching interviews are ongoing. Team owner David Tepper has severe competition from elsewhere regarding their preferred targets. The petulant billionaire mustn't get caught short once again.
It was pretty much doom and gloom the entire way where Carolina was concerned. They did have two wins to celebrate. A few players also managed to become shining lights amid the chaos.
With this in mind, here are four Panthers players who outperformed their pay grade in 2023.
Nick Thurman - Carolina Panthers DL
- 2023 salary: $850,000
There was a lot to like about Nick Thurman's flashes on the defensive line rotation this season. Nothing much was expected of the player before the campaign, but he turned in a series of encouraging performances to provide some much-needed stability to the interior.
Considering the former Houston college standout secured 31 tackles from just 35 percent of the Carolina Panthers' defensive snaps, he's one of those who gave the team some genuine bang for their buck. Especially considering he was making just $850,000.
This will increase to $985,000 in 2024. But it's another fight to make the roster first before focusing on potentially increasing his game-day reps.