Earlier today the Panthers and Anderson agreed on a contract extension that will keep him in Carolina until 2023. Anderson had a career year with the Panthers in 2020 finishing the season with career-highs in receptions (95) and receiving yards (1096), while also scoring four touchdowns.
When asked about Anderson's extension, head coach Matt Rhule said, "Robby is an outstanding player...I think he's going to be a vital part of our offense." Rhule also referred to Anderson as an "explosive player." Between Rhule's comments and the large paycheck that Anderson will be receiving, it is clear that Anderson will feature heavily in Carolina's plans over the next few seasons.
For many, the news of an Anderson extension comes as a bit of a surprise. The Panthers drafted DJ Moore in the first round in 2018, and there have been murmurs of an extension coming for the third-year receiver. On top of that, Carolina also used a second-round pick on Terrace Marshall Jr. this past offseason. Clearly, the team has placed an emphasis on giving quarterback Sam Darnold plenty of toys to play with this season and seasons to come.
General manager Scott Fitterer said that continuity among skill position players is a major focus of getting this deal done. Robby Anderson is signed until 2023, Terrace Marshall is signed until 2024, Christian McCaffrey is signed until 2025, and all signs point to DJ Moore inking an extension in the coming weeks or months. If continuity is the goal, the Panthers are well on their way to making it happen.
When asked about the math of it all, Rhule declined to comment on specifics. However, he did say that the Panthers' wanted to "sign more of their own [players],'' and that "they like their team." On the same topic, Fitterer alluded that more extensions may be coming. He said, "there is nothing pressing right now, but when the time comes, they may do it."
While more contracts may be rolled out in the future, Anderson is the man of the hour today, and he spoke very highly about the Panthers in his post-practice media availability today.
"This is ideally where I want to be. Ever since I came here, I felt like I was finally in my dream. I just genuinely love being here."
Anderson described Carolina as a place where he felt comfortable. He spoke highly of the team and the goals that they are working towards, and that he wanted to be here long-term to see those through. Anderson's familiarity with Sam Darnold is a reason he committed to the Panthers as well. "You know that's a factor too. Being back with a quarterback that I'm comfortable with, that I know is going to be here as well. Everything across the board was checkmarks, not just the money part of it."
The money is nice, but Anderson has his eyes on something bigger. When asked about his goals for 2021, he said that he wants to perform better than he did in 2020 because "if he does better than last year, it will contribute to the team scoring more points and winning more."
Anderson seems to have a great perspective on the deal. He knows that while the contract is signed and his future is locked in, his job isn't done quite yet. Anderson's goal is to win a Super Bowl in Carolina. He has a few years to make that dream into a reality, and Panthers fans are hopeful that Anderson will be holding the Lombardi while riding in a parade float down Trade Street in the coming years.