Carolina Panthers Offseason Report Card

Schuyler Callihan

Over the course of the last few months, the Carolina Panthers roster has changed drastically. Names like Cam Newton, Luke Kuechly, Greg Olsen, Eric Reid, and Gerald McCoy no longer headline the team's roster. The front office has decided to enter a rebuild under new head coach Matt Rhule and get younger at every area. 

Today, we examine the moves the Panthers have made thus far and whether or not they passed their offseason exams.

Free Agency

Great moves:

Signing OL Michael Schofield, WR Robby Anderson, LB Tahir Whitehead, DL Stephen Weatherly. 

Releasing S Colin Jones, TE Greg Olsen

Questionable moves: 

Signing QB Teddy Bridgewater, CB Eli Apple, OL John Miller, WR Seth Roberts. 

Releasing QB Cam Newton, S Eric Reid.

Subpar moves: 

Signing WR Keith Kirkwood, DL Zach Kerr, QB P.J. Walker, S Juston Burris, WR Pharoh Cooper.

Overall Grade: B-

These moves are not including letting several guys like Dontari Poe, Gerald McCoy, and others walk since they were not an actual transaction. Make no mistake, there are some questionable decisions, but overall the Panthers did a really good job of building their roster without overpaying for key guys. Tahir Whitehead will be a solid replacement for Luke Kuechly and adding guys such as Michael Schofield and Stephen Weatherly are a big boost in the trenches for each side of the ball. Signing Robby Anderson gives Carolina a triple threat in the aerial attack alongside Curtis Samuel and D.J. Moore. Due to Teddy Bridgewater's injury concerns, he is labeled as questionable although his talent certainly isn't.

NFL Draft

Great selections: 

RD 1 DL Derrick Brown, RD 2 S Jeremy Chinn, RD 2 Yetur Gross-Matos, RD 5 S Kenny Robinson.

Questionable selections:

 RD 4 Troy Pride Jr., RD 6 DL Bravvion Roy.

Subpar selections:

RD 7 CB Stanley Thomas-Oliver.

Overall Grade: C+

I love what the Panthers did at the beginning of the dradt by adding two key guys up front with Derrick Brown and Yetur Gross-Matos. However, as good as those two guys and Jeremy Chinn are, I feel like the second half of their class has a lot of question marks. Is Troy Pride Jr. going to be an NFL starter? Can Bravvion Roy prove he is not just a one year anomaly? Will Stanley Thomas-Oliver be able to play corner in the league at a high enough level to make the 53-man roster? Heck, can Gross-Matos be more than just a pass rusher? If history has shown anything under GM Marty Hurney, the Panthers typically only get one, maybe two, solid players per draft class. Will the 2020 class be different? It's hard to tell with so many unanswered questions.

Trades

Great trades: 

QB Kyle Allen to Redskins for 5th round pick. 

OG Trai Turner to Chargers for OT Russell Okung.

Questionable trades:

None.

Subpar trades:

None.

Overall Grade: A

The fact that the Panthers flipped QB Kyle Allen for a fifth round pick was an absolute steal and it may have been Ron Rivera's parting gift from the organization. They were able to use that fifth round pick and a third round pick to move back up into the second round to select Jeremy Chinn. As for the one-for-one swap of linemen, I think this was an ideal move. At first, I didn't see it as being beneficial, but when you add Schofield in free agency and have center Matt Paradis returning, you have a lot of chemistry up front. The three played in Denver together a couple of years ago and not to mention the Panthers finally have someone to protect the quarterback's blindside.

Contract Extensions

Great deals: 

Signing RB Christian McCaffrey to 4-year, $64 million.

Questionable deals:

Signing DE Efe Obada to a one-year deal. Signed FS Tre Boston to a three-year, $18 million deal.

Subpar deals: 

Signing RB Reggie Bonnafon, DB Cole Luke to one-year deals.

Overall Grade: A-

There may be only one great move here, but it trumps any of the questionable and subpar deals listed. Locking Christian McCaffrey up for the foreseeable future is a huge win for the franchise. He is still a very young player, but is already at the top of the league in his position. Having a guy like him around the locker room can help jumpstart this rebuild.

Offseason G.P.A: 3.18

Despite a near complete overhaul of the Panthers roster, it seems like the team did an extremely good job of identifying talent that will put them in the right direction. They are still a few years away from being true playoff contenders, but the moves they made this offseason should go a long way in getting them back to relevancy in the NFC South.

What do you think of the Panthers moves this offseason? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below!

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Comments (1)
No. 1-1
Reg100
Reg100

We have to put those guys in the right spots and start getting bigger and faster guys on both sides of the ball. Overall I think we'll be ok!


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