Panthers News: Bryce Young, Justin Houston, Steve Smith and power rankings

Delving deeper into the latest Carolina Panthers news and rumors from around the media.

Justin Houston
Justin Houston / Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
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Which Carolina Panthers news stories are hitting the headlines as preparations commence for their upcoming Week 16 game versus the Green Bay Packers?

There is no time to wallow in self-pity or bask in prolonged praise when it comes to the NFL regular season. The Carolina Panthers have newfound belief following their hard-fought win over the Atlanta Falcons, but this will count for nothing if they cannot put it to good use in Week 16 against the Green Bay Packers.

Until then, the stories causing conversation include faith in Bryce Young, Steve Smith Sr.'s deserved distinction, an anonymous edge rusher being let go at his request, and where the Panthers sit in ESPN's power rankings following their second triumph of the campaign.

Let's delve into each topic in more detail.

Carolina Panthers release Justin Houston

After coming into the organization with bold ambitions about forming the league's most productive sack duo with Brian Burns, Justin Houston is another on the Carolina Panthers who flattered to deceive in 2023. He was almost anonymous. He gained just 0.5 sacks during his brief stint on the field. He's been injured since shortly after the bye week.

It seems as if Houston is healthy enough to participate. That won't be for the Panthers, who released the player on Tuesday in the hopes of landing with a contending team in need of a veteran pass-rusher come playoff time.

Nobody should feel a type of way about this. Houston made little to no contribution aside from mentoring young players. It was a short, underwhelming period with the franchise. A parting of the ways is the best solution for all involved.