So far in the 2013 season, the Carolina Panthers have done next to nothing in free agency. Their most notable moves have been – releasing cornerback Chris Gamble, re-signing backup quarterback Derek Anderson, and signing CB Drayton Floerence. Three unexciting moves for the fan base, to say the least.
Unfortunately, the trend of staying quiet in free agency will continue for Carolina and their fans. As we sit here today, the Panthers are just $3 million under the salary cap for 2013.
This is clearly a bad thing, as we’re still four weeks away from the draft. The franchise is going to have to find a way between cuts and salary reductions, to make it work financially this season. There’s just no way to keep the current roster intact, draft an entire class, and give everybody the money they want. There will be casualties in Carolina, that’s for sure.
Who gets cut, and what contracts get restructured, are both unclear at this point. It’s too early to tell who the franchise will deem as a priority, but you always have to think veteran players will likely be the one’s on the chopping block. This is not a bad thing for a team like the Panthers.
With a team that’s a few years away from competing for a Super Bowl, the focus has to be on developing young players. There’s no sense in giving valuable playing time to a veteran on his way out, when you can get a rookie on the field and start the learning process that is the NFL.
Many teams like the Panthers, find themselves in similar position with cap difficulties this offseason, and while it’s not ideal, it will make them focus on the draft. Sure, it’s frustrating for fans that the Panthers won’t do anything in free agency, but it doesn’t mean that they won’t get immediate help with the draft.
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