The Carolina Panthers should not be hopeful in terms of getting new exciting free agents in this year’s offseason. While it would be beneficial for the Panthers to sign some big names currently searching for new contracts, the focus of Carolina’s management should be on attempting to find ways to keep the talent that they do have. If Carolina wants to compete next year, they shouldn’t worry about free agents and instead try to keep the team that took them to 12-4 during the 2014 season.
Now not all of the players can stay, what with the Panthers only having $11.2 million in cap room, but that money should be geared toward reworking contracts rather than trying to land new players. Despite the team’s successful season, there are still some glaring holes that need to be addressed. Their passing offense was almost nonexistent last year, posting one of the worst numbers in the league, and Carolina’s line could also use some new faces, especially if Jordan Gross decides to retire.
Building a team is more than just a one year stint. It takes time, scouting and getting the right players together. There is no doubt that Carolina had a great year and the future does look bright, but if they want to start to build a franchise they need to focus on who they have, not who they could get.
There are definitely some great players in the free agent market that Dave Gettleman would love to sign over to his squad, but the fact is Carolina has a solid team now. Their money should be focused on trying to improve the team that took them to 12-4 and not letting too many of their players drift off into free agency. There is always room for improvement, but that improvement should come from low-end free agents and the NFL Draft. The bigger issue is maintaining what they can of the defense, and that is going to happen by using their salary cap on their own unrestricted free agents, not worrying about anybody else’s. Carolina is full of big names, and those players are the ticket to a strong 2014 season.