Panthers News: Brian Burns, Yetur Gross-Matos, Justin Houston and workouts

Yetur Gross-Matos
Yetur Gross-Matos / Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports
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Carolina Panthers OLB Yetur Gross-Matos' transition

Many thought Yetur Gross-Matos would drop into the proverbial wilderness under the new coaching regime. The defensive end couldn't meet expectations from a starting role, but Ejiro Evero and his staff are not ready to give up on the former second-round selection just yet.

Gross-Matos is fighting hard to become the starting 3-4 outside linebacker opposite Brian Burns. This is a steep transition for someone that's played the majority of his career on the defensive front, but it's something that he's coped with well so far.

The one-time Penn State star has drawn praise from Evero and Brian Burns among others throughout the early preparation period. And Gross-Matos is clearly relishing a fresh challenge heading into a contract year based on his comments via Augusta Stone from the team's website.

"I'm excited about it; I know they're excited about it. We can talk about it all day because it's new for all of us. So (we) just try and learn as much as we can from each other's mistakes and what we do well. Before, I was playing D-line, but I was really taking on a lot of double-teams and just in the trenches. Now, I'm really able to use my athleticism more, running more, covering. We outside linebackers consider ourselves the alphas of the defense because we can do it all – rush the quarterback, cover guys, look at formations. So it's a bigger responsibility. But, you know, I'm all about it. And it's been fun."

Yetur Gross-Matos via

Marquis Haynes Sr. is another that's caught the eye in pursuit of extended reps within Evero's creative system. Carolina could also bring in another capable veteran before Week 1, so it'll be interesting to see how this dynamic shapes out when the pads get clapping in Spartanburg.