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#pounditTuesday, November 24, 2020

Articles tagged: Carolina Panthers

Robby Anderson signs two-year deal with Panthers

Robby Anderson

Robby Anderson has finally signed a free agent contract, but it is probably not as hefty as the wide receiver had hoped it would be.

Anderson has agreed to a two-year, $20 million deal with the Carolina Panthers, according to multiple reports.

Anderson will get $12 million from the Panthers in 2020, which is still slightly lower than the salary he was said to be seeking. Some predicted Anderson would get an average annual value in the $13-$15 million range, but his market appeared to come together slowly.

Anderson, 26, had 52 catches for 779 yards and five touchdowns last season. His peak came in 2017 when he posted 63 catches for 941 yards and seven TDs. The Jets were reportedly trying to re-sign him, so it’s possible he simply chose to go elsewhere. Anderson played at Temple when new Panthers head coach Matt Rhule was the head coach of the Owls.

The Panthers are rebuilding their offense after signing quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. Anderson may not be a clear-cut No. 1 receiver, but he dealt with some rough quarterback play in New York and has plenty of upside.

Cam Newton to be released by Panthers

Cam Newton tie

The Carolina Panthers have made it clear they are moving on from Cam Newton, and the former NFL MVP will soon be free to choose his next destination.

After presumably making an effort to trade Newton, the Panthers have decided to release the quarterback. The move could be made official on Tuesday, according to multiple reports.

The Panthers signed Teddy Bridgewater to a hefty contract last week, which signaled the end of Newton’s time in Carolina. While there were teams that expressed interest in trading for Newton, those teams likely were not willing to give up much knowing that it was only a matter of time before the Panthers released the 30-year-old.

Newton is coming off foot surgery, and he seems determined to prove he can get back to the level he was at when he was one of the most intimidating players in football. If his foot is 100 percent healed, Newton could make for a great comeback story. While there aren’t many teams currently in need of a starting quarterback, we have heard some intriguing possibilities. It will be interesting to see how the market develops.

PJ Walker signs with Panthers after XFL stint

Carolina Panthers logo

P.J. Walker’s XFL stint was successful enough that he’s landed an NFL job as a result.

As first reported by ESPN’s Dianna Russini, Walker has agreed to sign with the Carolina Panthers. The move will reunite him with coach Matt Rhule, who coached Walker at Temple.

Walker was one of the XFL’s standout players while playing quarterback for the Houston Roughnecks. He was so successful he attracted widespread NFL interest and has managed to play his way back into the NFL. It’s nice that, at least for one player, the XFL turned out to be a solid, worthwhile gamble.

Eric Reid to be released by Panthers

Eric Reid

The Carolina Panthers are making significant changes this offseason under new head coach Matt Rhule, and parting ways with veteran safety Eric Reid is the latest.

The Panthers have informed Reid that they will release him, according to multiple reports. Reid confirmed the news on Twitter.

Reid started 29 games for the Panthers in two seasons and ended up being a nice addition to their defense. He had 130 tackles, four sacks and seven tackles for loss last season, all of which were career highs. One of the teams that could look to sign him is the Washington Redskins, as Reid likely has a good relationship with Ron Rivera.

Rivera brought Reid to Carolina after it seemed like many teams were avoiding the defensive back over his support for Colin Kaepernick. Reid has continued to stand behind Kaepernick, and the reality is that could deter some teams from signing the 28-year-old.

Report: Bears have discussed Cam Newton trade with Panthers

The Carolina Panthers made it clear this week that they are moving on from Cam Newton when they signed Teddy Bridgewater, but the Chicago Bears could be among the teams that do not want to wait until the Panthers release Newton to make a run at the quarterback.

The Bears have had recent discussions with Carolina about a potential Newton trade, Jonathan Jones of CBS Sports reports. Although it is a virtual certainty Newton will be released if he’s not traded, Chicago may not want to risk having to compete with other teams to sign the former NFL MVP.

The Bears publicly committed to Mitchell Trubisky as their starting quarterback for 2020 at the end of last season, but it is clear they are exploring other options. They reportedly had talks with Bridgewater before he signed with Carolina, and they are said to be targeting other players who could potentially compete with Trubisky for a starting job.

Newton will earn around $19 million in the final year of his contract next season. With the Panthers having clearly moved on from him, they will probably take a mid- or late-round pick for him rather than releasing him. We know of at least one other team that has reached out to Carolina about a potential trade, so a market has definitely developed.

Teddy Bridgewater to sign with Panthers

Teddy Bridgewater

The Carolina Panthers are turning things over from Cam Newton to Teddy Bridgewater.

Not long after the Panthers announced that they have given Newton permission to seek a trade, reports surfaced that Carolina had a deal with Bridgewater. The deal is believed to be worth $63 million over three years.

That isn’t quite as much money as some thought Bridgewater would get, but it sounds like good pay for a player who has played sparingly over the past three seasons.

Bridgewater boosted his stock by playing well in place of an injured Drew Brees last season. The New Orleans Saints won all five of their games that Bridgewater started while Brees was out with a thumb injury, and Bridgewater helped keep them in the playoff hunt.

We know of at least one other team that was interested in signing Bridgewater, but ultimately he chose the Panthers and new offensive coordinator Joe Brady. Brady was the passing game coordinator with LSU last season, and he spent time with the Saints before that. The familiarity between Bridgewater and Brady likely gave the Panthers a big advantage over other teams.

Cam Newton rips Panthers for acting like he requested a trade

Cam Newton tie

Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers are headed for a divorce, and it does not sound like it will be an amicable one.

The Panthers announced on Tuesday that they have given Newton permission to seek a trade. Not long after, Newton took to Instagram to rip the team for making it seem like he is the one who wants to part ways and not the other way around. In an Instagram comment on the post the Panthers created saying they have “given Cam Newton permission to seek a trade,” Newton told the team not to “manipulate the narrative and act like I wanted this.”

“Stop with the word play. I never asked for it,” Newton wrote in his typical unique font pattern. “There is no dodging this one. I love the Panthers to death and will always love you guys. Please do not try and play me or manipulate the narrative and act like I wanted this. You forced me into this.”

Former Panthers tight end Greg Olsen, who recently signed with the Seattle Seahawks, also chimed in with a comment and hinted that the same happened to him in Carolina.

Newton may have asked for the trade, but he likely would have preferred to remain with the Panthers if he were still in their plans. The former NFL MVP had a close relationship with Ron Rivera, and it sounds like new head coach Matt Rhule already has a replacement for Newton in mind.

There are almost always hard feelings when a franchise parts ways with a star quarterback, and we have already seen the Patriots try to point the finger at Tom Brady now that he is leaving New England. Newton isn’t about to let the Panthers do the same with him.

Panthers give Cam Newton permission to seek a trade; eyeing Teddy Bridgewater

The Carolina Panthers are planning to part ways with Cam Newton, and they appear to already have a replacement in mind.

In a somewhat bizarre move, the Panthers announced on Tuesday that they have given Newton and his representatives permission to seek a trade.

“Every year difficult decisions are made and they are never easy. We have been working with Cam and his agent to find the best fit for him moving forward and he will always be a Carolina Panther in our hearts,” general manager Marty Hurney said.

According to ESPN’s Dianna Russini, the Panthers are already in the process of trying to bring in Newton’s replacement. Carolina has reportedly been having discussions with free agent Teddy Bridgewater that are “going very well.”

New Panthers head coach Matt Rhule said previously that he is “unbelievably excited” to work with Newton, but the franchise is clearly going in a different direction. That said, Newton is still recovering from a foot injury that cost him the majority of the 2019 season, so he will need to pass physicals and prove to teams he is healthy before any trade can be completed.

We can think of one option that might make sense for Newton if the Panthers are able to trade him, but multiple teams should be interested. Newton is a former NFL MVP and No. 1 overall draft pick who is still just 30. If he’s healthy, he could be a huge difference maker for a franchise.

Panthers have interest in Justin Herbert?

Justin Herbert

The Carolina Panthers will eventually have to decide whether or not they want Cam Newton to remain their starting quarterback in 2020, and their interest in one of the top quarterback prospects in the draft may be a hint about how they plan to move forward.

Panthers general manager Marty Hurney attended Oregon’s Pro Day on Thursday, and Andrew Groover of NFL Network noted that Hurney was the only NFL GM present. Hurney was seen speaking with Justin Herbert after the star quarterback finished throwing passes.

On a day where NFL teams were encouraging scouts and staff members to avoid travel due to the coronavirus outbreak, it is certainly significant that Hurney went through with attending Oregon’s Pro Day. Perhaps he simply did not want to alter his travel plans, but there’s also a chance he was determined to watch Herbert throw. Hurney also could have been scouting other Ducks players.

The Panthers currently have the No. 7 overall pick in the draft, and many believe new head coach Matt Rhule will want to start fresh at quarterback by drafting and developing a player. Carolina should be in a position to draft Herbert if they want him.

Newton’s future depends upon when — and if — he is fully recovered from the foot injury that cost him the majority of the 2019 season. We’ve already heard him linked to more than one team if the Panthers decide to trade him, but there’s no guarantee they will go that route. Rhule has said he is excited to work with Newton. Maybe he’s telling the truth.

Are Panthers setting up to tank for Trevor Lawrence?

Trevor Lawrence

There has been a lot of talk about what the Carolina Panthers will do with Cam Newton this offseason, but the organization might be thinking about another quarterback instead.

According to Matt Miller of Bleacher Report, many within the league believe the Panthers will attempt to tank the 2020 season to try to draft Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence. Miller believes that the Panthers’ decision to trade Pro Bowl offensive lineman Trai Turner straight up for an aging Russell Okung serves as evidence of that.

Tanking can be easier said than done. There were widespread rumors before the 2019 season that the Miami Dolphins were going to tank for Tua Tagovailoa, and now they’re picking fifth in the NFL Draft after managing five wins. The Panthers have talent as long as Christian McCaffrey is on the roster, and they may have a harder time losing games than it seems. It still bears watching, however, if the Panthers have already fallen in love with Lawrence. They could be quite desperate to get him.