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It is now time for me, your ruler, to weigh in on the Carolina Panthers 2021 season. I have taken into account all variables, known and unknown, and developed what I think is the most accurate season prediction possible. Let us begin. Fast Start Out of the gate the Carolina Panthers appear to be a team on the rise. starting 3-0 with talks of playoffs starting once again. While the team does look much improved, their early success is also due to the weak front end of their schedule. The Wall By game 4 the Panthers will hit a wall, mainly due to the weakness of their offensive line. By then, teams will be working around Matt Rhule and his system of hiding awful players via scheme. At this point, Elfein will be benched permanently and replaced by Dennis Daley with Deonte Brown becoming the new starting right guard. The line does not improve immediately , but instead sees incremental growth with each passing game. By November they will resemble a professional football offensive line. The QB Sam Darnold will flash moments of brilliance but also inconsistency. However, his play will be strong enough for the Carolina Panthers to compete in every game. Darnold will also do what Teddy never could, win multiple games in the 4th quarter. The Emergence of the Dominating D This season will mark the return of a punishing, dominating defense in Carolina. Derek Brown will come into his own as Brian Burns gets All Pro numbers. Jeremy Chinn becomes the field general we all want him to be as Jaycee Horn improves as the season transpires and develops into our first shut down corner since Bradberry. Conclusion The Carolina Panthers finish their 2017 season with a 9-8 record, narrowly missing a wild card birth due to a tiebreaker loss. While disappointing, this sets up an excited fan base for the 2022 season with the playoffs a real possibility.
Kelvin Benjamin's injury has forced the roster projection to change, but not in a way you might expect. Offense - 25 Quarterback - 3 Cam Newton Derek Anderson Joe Webb Note: Remember, Webb can also play that large possession receiver spot if needed. Running Back - 3 Jonathan Stewart Cameron Artis-Payne Jordan Todman Note: These three backs plus Mike Tolbert is enough running power to win any game on the schedule, period. Fullback - 1 Mike Tolbert Tight End - 4 Greg Olsen Ed Dickson Marcus Lucas Richie Brockel Note: With the Panthers utilizing the two tight end set more frequently, they are going to need more than two pass catching tight ends. Marcus Lucas impressed both in camp and preseason game 1, more so than Simonson. Wide Receiver - 5 Devin Funchess Corey Brown Ted Ginn Brenton Bersin Jerricho Cotchery Note: Well, I have taken Kelvin Benjamin off the list and have not replaced him. I feel the Panthers will now keep 5 wide outs, a pretty typical number across the league. Instead they will opt for a third pass catching tight end who can also contribute on special teams. Why add another receiver that is exactly like two guys already on the roster and not activate him on game days? Offensive Line - 9 Michael Oher Andrew Norwell Ryan Kalil Trai Turner Mike Remmers Daryl Williams Chris Scott Amini Silatolu Nate Chandler Note: Panthers could opt to waive Brian Folkerts and use Mike Remmers as the backup center. This frees up roster space and makes room for the day that Daryl Williams is starting (it will happen this season). Williams has been the most impressive rookie overall in camp. Defense: 25 Defensive Line - 9 Charles Johnson Star Lotulelei Kawaan Short Frank Alexander Kony Ealy Colin Cole Dwan Edwards Mario Addison Kyle Love Note: Panthers still hang on to Kyle Love due to injury concerns with Star. Love was the player that was brought up when Lotulelei was first injured in January. Linebacker - 6 Thomas Davis Luke Kuechly Shaq Thompson AJ Klein David Mayo Jason Trusnik Note: I have added Trusnik here due to how poor punt coverage teams looked in preseason game 1. Clearly the Panthers need all the special teams help they can get. Safety - 4 Roman Harper Tre Boston Kurt Coleman Colin Jones Corners - 6 Josh Norman Bene Benwikere Charles Tillman Teddy Williams Melvin White TJ Heath Note: Like Trusnik, I have added special teams ace Williams here. Carrington Byndom back on practice squad. Special Teams - 3 Kicker - Graham Gano Punter - Brad Nortman Long Snapper - JJ Jansen Practice Squad - 10 Carrington Byndom Lee Ward Damiere Byrd Brandon Wegher David Foucault Adarius Glanton Dean Marlowe Martin Wallace (unkown player) (unkown player) View full article