Ranking the top 10 Carolina Panthers players on the 2024 roster

Who are the best players on the Carolina Panthers in 2024?
Jaycee Horn
Jaycee Horn / Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
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10. Shaq Thompson - Carolina Panthers LB

Entering the 10th spot on this list for the second year is long-time Carolina Panthers linebacker Shaq Thompson. He remains a key presence for defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero’s defense.

Thompson is also entering his 10th season in the league. He is one of just two players remaining from Carolina’s 15-1 team that was runner-up in Super Bowl 50, though details from this game will be spared.

The former first-round pick from Washington has been a consistent pillar for the Panthers' defense. However, he will enter his first season after a major injury following a broken fibula suffered in Week 2 against the New Orleans Saints. Before the complication, Thompson was slated to have another impactful campaign.

It’s amazing to see how much Thompson has grown and matured as a player since his early years. He may not be a top linebacker, but he has shown stability in the run game and coverage. However, there are question marks as to what type of player he’ll be coming off a significant leg injury.

Thompson displayed sound football intelligence with adequate run fits and gap integrity before his misfortune on the health front. Furthermore, the 10th-year starter is disciplined in his drops and is precise in pursuit angles.

At 30 years old, No. 54 will be a welcome sight on the defensive side of the ball in 2024.

9. Jordan Fuller - Carolina Panthers S

After releasing Vonn Bell, the Panthers needed to find their box, split safety to fit the run, attack downhill from depth, and be the force defender near the line of scrimmage. Dan Morgan filled that need by signing former Los Angeles Rams safety Jordan Fuller, one of the better run-defending defensive backs out there.

During his final season in Los Angeles, Fuller displayed a knack for the football with three interceptions and forced fumbles. There was a time or two when the former Ohio State Buckeye would use the classic “Peanut Punch” that Charles Tillman would utilize often during his playing days.

Fuller’s presence will be beneficial for a defense that sometimes struggled to create takeaways.

Fuller will be active in the run game as his numbers from 2021 and 2023 portray due to his high solo tackle count. He brings plenty of pop in the middle of the field and when making stops in the open field. The former 2020 sixth-round selection also offers quality size and range at 6-foot-2, 203 pounds.

Furthermore, Fuller displays some off-man coverage reps against slot receivers, running backs, and tight ends. The Panthers wanted to improve their run defense, especially on the backend. They seem to have accomplished this on paper.