This season, I truly believe we will see the wisdom of the Dave Gettleman hire. I’ve always felt that bringing Gettleman to Charlotte was a perfect marriage. With so many new faces in the secondary and at wide receiver and the depth chart still up in the air, these aren’t positions where Gettleman will look to make drastic cuts. He’ll be looking for a few young guys grow with a good mix of veteran leadership. Camp will tell the tale in the end for this team. This may be one of the few times where you should be able to see who should start, as looks like there may be a real competition at wideout and defensive back. Starting tomorrow, they’ll have to play their way onto the field.
Gettleman may look to cut corners at linebacker, given the talent between Luke Keuchly and Thomas Davis and Sean McDermott’s tendency towards zone coverage. I believe AJ Klein is ready to take that next step, which leads me to my surprise cut—Chase Blackburn. The former Giant’s leadership and experience is valuable, but I think the Panthers need to develop younger guys at other positions will result Gettleman cutting Blackburn late in camp. Anderson Russell and the newly signed Anthony Morales may be among these young players Carolina hopes to groom. Don’t be surprised to see Blackburn go in order to keep a younger guy with less immediate value, but with future potential around.
One of the biggest strengths of this team has been its defensive line, mainly because the money and draft pics invested in the front four. With the money invested in Charles Johnson and Greg Hardy and 1st and 2nd round picks on Star and Short respectively, the defense is clearly the engine driving this team. Maybe with such an elite group, Carolina can go short here and look to help the side of the ball that most needs it—the offense. With such a young group, they will be the key in how far this team goes. With the injury to the 4th round pick Edmund Kugbila, the Panthers need to go long at offensive lineman, meaning that back up running backs and quarterbacks should be on alert. Joe Webb could be cut or one of the many wide receivers
By Joshua Cornelius