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Panthers interested in reunion with former Defensive Player of the Year

Panthers helmet on the field

Nov 10, 2019; Green Bay, WI, USA; A Carolina Panthers helmet sits on the field during warmups prior to the game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

The Carolina Panthers are reportedly interested in bringing back a player who made a Pro Bowl with them a few seasons ago.

The Panthers have reached out to free-agent cornerback Stephon Gilmore to discuss a potential return to Carolina, according to Joe Person of The Athletic.

Gilmore was with the Panthers for a brief period in 2021, but he made a big impact. Carolina acquired the former No. 10 overall pick in a trade with the New England Patriots midway through that season. Gilmore appeared in 8 games for the Panthers and had two interceptions. The performance was enough to earn him a fifth Pro Bowl nod.

Prior to arriving in Carolina, Gilmore was one of the best lockdown cornerbacks in the NFL with both the Patriots and Buffalo Bills. He won the 2019 NFL Defensive Player of the Year award in New England.

Gilmore spent last season with the Cowboys after they acquired him in a trade with the Indianapolis Colts. He started all 17 games and played an important role after Trevon Diggs suffered a season-ending injury in Week 2. Gilmore finished with a career-high 68 tackles and had 2 interceptions. He proved with one particular late-season performance that he is still capable of playing at an elite level.

Gilmore is reportedly open to a reunion with another one of his former teams, so he may be nearing a free agency decision.


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