Now that the Carolina Panthers have finished their minicamp, more questions have developed than answers when it comes to their final roster. Many things are up for grabs, but one thing is certain. Carolina Panthers training camp in Spartanburg this season is going to be very, very interesting.
The following roster projection is based upon offseason practice rep counts and other factors.
2016 Carolina Panthers Roster Projection
Carolina Panthers Offense 25
Cam Newton, Derek Anderson, Joe Webb
Tight End (3)
Greg Olsen, Ed Dickson, Beau Sandland
Note: If there is going to be a surprise veteran cut this year, it could be Carolina Panthers tight end Ed Dickson. The Carolina Panthers have two young tight ends they really like in Scott Simonson and Beau Sandland. Dickson had a lackluster performance in OTAs and minicamp. I am not ready to say his job is in jeopardy, but there is room for a young player to step up here.
Wide Receiver (5)
Kelvin Benjamin, Devin Funchess, Ted Ginn, Philly Brown, Stephen Hill
Note: No change here either. I am sticking with this prediction for now. Stephen Hill has looked like a much improved player.
Running Back (3)
Jonathan Stewart, ,Fozzy Whitaker, Cameron Artis-Payne
Note: This is a very tough call. At this point I think Fozzy Whitaker has a place on this roster. Brandon Wegher is left off this list and onto the practice squad solely based on number of reps in practices. This is one of the more intriguing positions to keep an eye on in Spartanburg. There is still room for plenty of movement.
Full Back (1)
Note: UDFA rookie fullback Devon “Rockhead” Johnson is placed on practice squad for further development.
Offensive Line (10)
Michael Oher, Mike Remmers, Daryl Williams, Trai Turner, Andrew Norwell, Ryan Kalil, Chris Scott, Gino Gradkowski, David Foucault, (Insert Free Agent Here)
Note: I still believe a free agent tackle is coming sooner or later. As of now, David Foucault is backing up Michael Oher. I am not too sure how comfortable I am with that.
Carolina Panthers Defense (25)
Defensive Line (9)
Kony Ealy, Charles Johnson, Star Lotulelei, Kawann Short, Vernon Butler, Paul Soliai, Mario Addison, Rakim Cox, Ryan Delaire
Note: Second year players Cox and Delaire have the most promise of the young ends to spell Ealy or Johnson effectively. Defensive end depth will be added this year in light of last year’s depletion of the position and questions around the durability of Charles Johnson.
Thomas Davis, Luke Kuechly, Shaq Thompson, AJ Klein, David Mayo
Note: As of today I don’t see rookie linebacker Jeremy Cash making the regular roster. Look for him to be placed on the practice squad for future development.
Bene Benwikere, James Bradberry, Daryl Worley, Zack Sanchez, Robert McClain, Lou Young
Note: With such inexperience at the position, the Panthers need to keep six corners and hope a couple really step up to the plate. Don’t sleep on Lou Young. He played outside and in the nickel position very well throughout offseason practices.
Kurt Coleman, Tre Boston, Dean Marlowe, Colin Jones, Marcus Ball
Note: Tre Boston looks much improved this season. Cam Newton agreed in an interview recently. Marcus Ball is an impressive player physically. Tre Boston recently told me he was overall the most athletic safety.
Special Teams (3)
Graham Gano, Swayze Waters, JJ Jansen
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