4 established alphas on the Carolina Panthers roster in 2024

The Carolina Panthers need their established alphas to produce in 2024.
Taylor Moton
Taylor Moton / Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
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Derrick Brown - Carolina Panthers DL

Derrick Brown was an emerging alpha last season. He's firmly established now.

The Carolina Panthers were expecting big things from Brown working under Ejiro Evero's guidance. He somehow managed to exceed targets, propelling himself into the elite category for defensive lineman and becoming the team's best overall player along the way.

There's a lot to like about the way Brown goes about his business. He's not the most flamboyant, but he leads by example through strong demands and a high work ethic. This is something players naturally gravitate towards - especially when they see the former first-round selection holding himself to the same standards.

Brown was nothing short of sensational last season. He broke the NFL's single-season record for tackles by an interior defensive lineman. This was made all the more remarkable considering the number of double and triple teams he had to navigate throughout the 2024 campaign.

Dan Morgan recognized Brown's integral importance to his rebuilding project. Many wondered how the Panthers would handle his contract situation after dealing with Brian Burns' predicament horribly. The new general manager left no doubt that things were being done differently under his leadership.

Brown received a four-year, $96 million deal with $59.31 million guaranteed. This keeps the Auburn product around for his best years and provides the player with deserved long-term financial security for good measure.

This is a win-win for all parties. Brown is a cornerstone piece in every sense of the term. The addition of A'Shawn Robinson to the defensive front should make things easier. If this results in the lineman taking another step forward in Year 5 of his professional career, a second Pro Bowl pick and potential All-Pro selection is entirely possible.

Brown is one of the league's best at what he does. The Panthers need all that and more from him next season in their quest to regain respectability around the NFL.