Four years ago in a Dave Gettleman regime, the answer would have been on the roster. New ownership with David Tepper and a rebooted Marty Hurney as GM has brought a different attitude to how Carolina builds a roster, addresses personnel weaknesses, and how the team adapts as initial plans show potential flaws. As David Tepper noted in All or Nothing, “it’s about taking smart, calculated risks,” and just one week into training camp showed that hoping things would click for Rashaan Gaulden or that Ross Cockrell, who is returning from a major leg injury, could quickly transition from corner to safety revealed a poorly calculated risk. Instead of hoping that the answer was on the roster or finally admitting that it just wasn’t going to work after week two, Carolina signed former Carolina Panther Tre Boston to a one-year 3 million dollar deal.
Carolina’s front office has shown subtle signs of this more aggressive approach over the past two years in nabbing Dontari Poe after Brashard Breeland’s deal fell through because of a non-football injury and with adding Eric Reid midseason. Hurney only ramped it up this offseason, nailing several free agents who most assumed were a little out of Carolina's price range. Bringing back Eric Reid and Daryl Williams, landing Pro Bowl center Matt Paradis, and somehow courting Gerald McCoy all show that Carolina isn’t going to be afraid to bet on now rather than holding out for later.
As news breaks about the acquisition of Tre Boston, I can’t help but ask why didn’t this happen last season, or two months ago? Seriously, Boston has been sitting at home after making a Pro Bowl with the Chargers in 2017 and playing as best as one could ask on a horrid Arizona Cardinals in 2018. Why hasn’t anyone, including Carolina, signed Boston earlier? On top of that, why has no one in the league been willing to pay Boston more than 3 million? It will probably take storming Area 51 to figuring that out, but there’s no need to troll the conspiracy theory subreddits to see that Carolina is taking “smart, calculated risks” in hopes of winning now without mortgaging future success.
By Tony Dunn
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