4 remaining free agents with connections to the Carolina Panthers in 2023

Ronald Darby
Ronald Darby / Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
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Carolina Panthers could sign DeAndre Hopkins

DeAndre Hopkins is the biggest remaining name on the market. And in all honesty, it's not particularly close.

The Carolina Panthers need that No. 1 receiving option unless a young gunner like Terrace Marshall Jr. takes a monumental leap forward. Hopkins could provide Bryce Young with a security blanket and improve the receiver room, by moving all other options down by one spot.

Most may look at Hopkins as a longshot for the Panthers. However, he is a native of South Carolina and played college football at Clemson. Coming home could be a real option for the star pass catcher and the connection is obvious if not the most direct imaginable.

While there hasn't been much substance behind the rumors linking the Panthers with a potential move for Hopkins, that hasn't stopped some respected insiders from claiming Carolina is still waiting in the wings to potentially bring the All-Pro on board.

This would no doubt be a popular move. However, the Panthers might be happy with what they have and the player could be aiming a little higher up the NFL food chain in pursuit of finishing his professional career with a Super Bowl ring.

Nothing can be dismissed entirely, especially considering Scott Fitterer's mentality. But this bold splash also ignores the concerns at edge rusher and cornerback, which are bigger needs currently.