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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8. Jadeveon Clowney - Carolina Panthers OLB

The signing of Jadeveon Clowney was one of the most popular moves made by the Carolina Panthers this offseason and for good reason. The former No. 1 overall high school recruit and draft selection signed a two-year, $20 million contract to his “hometown” team, just 30 minutes away from Rock Hill, South Carolina.

Clowney said this to Josina Anderson about his return to the Carolinas and why he signed with the team.

"“We’re going to be just 30 minutes from home. It’s where we do all our community and foundation work going into season 11. Plus, my Grandaddy is getting older; and last year we had a lot of losses in our family. So honestly, it just feels like a full circle moment being closer.”"

Jadeveon Clowny via X

Clowney is essentially the replacement for Brian Burns, who was traded to the New York Giants. However, the former Gamecock is a different type of player than his predecessor - one that should help the run game improve on the edges.

Despite playing on his now-sixth team, Clowney has shown to be a reliable and capable run defender and one of the better pure edge setters in the league. His size and length make him a handful to wash out in the run game, He also does a great job at squeezing gaps and playing with extension to maintain gap integrity.

Clowney matched a career-high in sacks with the Baltimore Ravens last season at 9.5. While that number could dip just a tad, he should still be the main pass-rushing presence in Carolina’s outside rush linebacker room.

To say this is a perfect fit in Ejiro Evero’s defense is an understatement, detailing why he is one of the 10 best players on the roster. 

7. Damien Lewis - Carolina Panthers OL

Following a horrific showing by the offense in 2023, Dan Morgan knew he had to build a stable base of talent around his second-year quarterback Bryce Young. Once free agency began, the former franchise linebacker got to work.

One of his key offensive additions was former Seattle Seahawks left guard Damien Lewis. The veteran was one of the better guards in the NFL last season. He was rewarded accordingly.

Lewis was a former third-round selection from LSU’s historic 2019 national championship season. While his development in the league took time, he made the most of it by signing a four-year, $53 million contract to bolster Carolina’s protection.

At 6-foot-2 and 327 pounds, Lewis moves quite well for his size. He offers good torque in his hips, allowing him to flip, turn, and unload to put pass rushers into the turf. The interior force is also a very powerful guard with incredible leg drive, play strength, anchor ability, and knee bend.

The former Tiger is always looking for work in pass protection. Lewis also offers the flexibility to work to the second level and meet his landmarks. 

Lewis should seamlessly fit Dave Canales’ run-first, wide-zone offense. His addition to the offensive line could do wonders in 2024.