Panthers news: Cam Newton, Nicole Tepper, Josh McCown and Derrick Brown

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

Derrick Brown
Derrick Brown / Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
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Carolina Panthers DL Derrick Brown's future

The Carolina Panthers are trying to successfully resolve their contract dilemmas with linebacker Frankie Luvu and stud edge rusher Brian Burns. This is arguably taking priority above all else right now so close to free agency. But the need to extend another integral part of the defensive puzzle is also glaring.

Derrick Brown has plenty of leverage after a record-breaking campaign that saw him emerge into the elite category. He's also got Drew Rosenhaus as his agent, who isn't especially keen on his top-level players seeing out their deals without extra financial security.

David Latham from Last Word on Sports highlighted the complex situation financially between the Panthers and Brown. It's complicated, but the writer believes there is a way to keep everyone happy heading into an important offseason for the franchise.

"Derrick Brown is going to receive life-changing money on his next contract, but can the Panthers afford to hand it out? While signing homegrown talents is obviously important, the Panthers also need to set some money aside to sign free agents to help the offensive side of the ball. Because of this, one might think that the Panthers can’t afford to give Derrick Brown a new contract at the moment. However, there is a way for them to give Brown a new deal and lower his cap hit. As of this posting, Brown carries an $11.65 million cap hit, but Carolina can clear up an additional $8.43 million in cap space with an extension, per OverTheCap. While this will increase his cap hit down the line, it’s a price worth paying for one of the best interior defensive linemen in the game."

David Latham, LWOS

The Panthers brought in Brandt Tilis to maneuver money around more effectively. Retaining Brown, Burns, and Luvu would be a good place to start. But there is also a real need to strengthen the options around quarterback Bryce Young that cannot be overlooked.