New Panthers GM Scott Fitterer did a tremendous job this offseason in both free agency and in the 2021 NFL Draft by improving the roster on both sides of the ball. They made an upgrade at the quarterback position by trading for Sam Darnold and shipping Teddy Bridgewater to Denver for a 6th round pick and signed LB Denzel Perryman, LB Haason Reddick, CB A.J. Bouye, CB Rashaan Melvin, DT DaQuan Jones, WR David Moore, and TE Dan Arnold in free agency.
Then in the draft, the Panthers landed their shutdown corner in Jaycee Horn, replaced Curtis Samuel's spot with LSU WR Terrace Marshall Jr., and replaced Mike Davis with Oklahoma State running back Chuba Hubbard. Even though the Panthers fulfilled many of their needs, there are still just a few spots on the roster that need to be addressed before the start of the 2021 season.
Below are three positions the Panthers may want to consider adding depth to.
Jeremy Chinn had a phenomenal rookie season and should have had more consideration for defensive rookie of the year. That said, it seems like the Panthers would like to play him more in the box but they don't have much depth at either safety spot nor is there anyone reliable enough to make that move more permanent for Chinn. Juston Burris, Sam Franklin, Myles Hartsfield, and Kenny Robinson are all good role players but there are better options on the market. Bringing in another safety would be a huge help for not only Chinn but the defense as a whole.
I know the Panthers signed Cameron Erving in the first wave of free agency and then proceeded to draft BYU's Brady Christensen in last week's draft but if I'm Scott Fitterer, I'm not satisfied. Erving's struggles have been well documented and it would be asking a lot for Christensen to step up into a starting role as a rookie - he needs a lot of development. This may be the biggest need of them all but don't be surprised if Carolina rolls into training camp with those two battling it out for the starting job. Trent Scott and Greg Little will also be in the mix.
Since there are not many glaring needs for the Panthers, I'll turn my attention to the quarterback room. No, I'm not saying bring someone in to compete with Darnold for the starting job. It should be his job to lose. However, going into the year with only P.J. Walker and Will Grier battling for the backup job is a bit risky to me. There are a few veteran free agents that would be content with being the backup i.e. Nick Mullens, Matt Barkley, Robert Griffin III. Again, these are just examples and won't be guys that will push Darnold but it will, however, strengthen the quarterback room.
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