Which Carolina Panthers players need to perform more than most during the team's regular-season opener at the Atlanta Falcons in Week 1?
Excitement is growing with every passing hour heading into the Carolina Panthers' season opener at the Atlanta Falcons. The chance to begin their campaign by getting one over on a divisional rival only sweetens the pot, although there is a sense of trepidation among some sections of the fanbase after a week full of distractions so far.
There is an obvious cloud surrounding the Panthers and their contract situation with Brian Burns. Whether this has a ripple effect on other roster members remains to be seen, but everyone should be professional enough to realize this is just business when it's all said and done.
The Panthers are slight underdogs for the contest, but they aren't without a chance. In order to accomplish this, their top performers must produce the goods and provide the inspiration needed in a hostile environment.
With this in mind, here are arguably the four most important Panthers players in Week 1.
Bradley Bozeman - Carolina Panthers C
With a rookie quarterback manning the plate and fourth-rounder Chandler Zavala set to get the start at right guard, Bradley Bozeman has a pivotal role to play in Week 1. The experienced center must ensure communication is at the highest possible level to make things easier for the aforementioned duo while also containing a potentially prolific Atlanta Falcons defensive front three consisting of Calais Campbell, Grady Jarrett, and David Onyemata.
Bozeman is entering his second season with the Panthers and was an absolute revelation in 2022 once installed into the starting lineup. If Carolina wants to stand any chance of winning on Sunday, they need this trend to continue.