5 winners and losers from Carolina Panthers 2023 training camp Week 1

There's been a lot to unpack throughout the first week of Carolina Panthers training camp.

Adam Thielen
Adam Thielen / Jared C. Tilton/GettyImages
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Winner No. 2

Adam Thielen - Carolina Panthers WR

Much of the talk has been centered on D.J. Chark and Terrace Marshall Jr. throughout camp, which is fine. But the contribution made by fellow wide receiver Adam Thielen so far has been arguably more impressive.

While the free-agent signing doesn't have the splash plays that make the highlight reel, there's more to his game than that. Thielen is getting open quickly, showing an impressive first step and a complete understanding of the Carolina Panthers route concepts for good measure.

It's evident that Thielen is going to become rookie quarterback Bryce Young's best friend on Sundays. His experience and reliability will be major assets for an offense that looks set to spread the football around in the immediate aftermath of D.J. Moore's departure, so expect the former undrafted free agent to feature heavily.

Thielen's also been praised for his leadership abilities since spurning other offers to join Frank Reich's ambitious project. Considering how many youngsters are situated across the offensive depth charts, this is another valuable element that cannot be overlooked.

Some have questioned whether Thielen has lost a step or if he can produce the same numbers without an All-Pro running mate such as Justin Jefferson or Stefon Diggs. Based on how the veteran has applied himself so far, there is still life in the old dog yet.