Grading the latest four major Panthers moves in 2023 free agency

Justin McCray
Justin McCray / Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
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Grading the latest three major moves by the Carolina Panthers during what's been a highly eventful period of free agency in 2023.

It's been a frantic and productive free agency period for the Carolina Panthers so far. Those in power have done a great job of finding the right pieces and strengthening problem position groups, with their daring trade up to No. 1 overall in the 2023 NFL Draft something else that brings a fascinating dynamic to the team's offseason equation

Despite not having much money to spend, the Panthers have structured contracts for their free-agent signings well. They have plenty of financial flexibility in 2024 to compensate for this, which will be dented by potential extensions for Brian Burns and Jeremy Chinn in the not-too-distant future. 

More is obviously needed to give their NFC South title chances another shot in the arm under Frank Reich. However, there is a level of optimism across the franchise that was sorely lacking when Matt Rhule's incompetent decision-making brought little in the way of on-field prosperity. 

With that being said, we looked at and graded the latest three major moves by the Panthers in 2023 free agency. 

Move No. 1

Carolina Panthers
Myles Hartsfield / Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

Carolina Panthers let Myles Hartsfield walk

Not only did the Carolina Panthers not put a tender on free-agent defensive back Myles Hartsfield, but they also allowed him to walk in free agency for good measure. The former undrafted free agent out of Ole Miss penned a deal with the San Francisco 49ers, which reunites the player with Steve Wilks once again. 

Hartsfield is versatile and could earn a rotational role in San Francisco. But the Panthers are moving into a new scheme under Ejiro Evero and clearly felt better options were or could be available. 

Grade: B+

While Hartsfield deserves credit for emerging from obscurity and carving out a successful career for himself, a fresh start was probably needed for all parties based on his production last season.