Recapping the Carolina Panthers’ Most Recent Offseason Moves

Panthers DE Brian Burns

NFL free agency begins on March 13. The Carolina Panthers have made several moves in preparation for the beginning of free agency and the NFL Draft.

Let’s explore some of the Panthers’ recent roster moves while analyzing how they affect the team. 

Panthers Place Franchise Tag On Brian Burns 

The Carolina Panthers used their franchise tag on Brian Burns prior to the March 5 deadline. This means that Carolina now has until mid-July to strike a long-term deal or a modified one-year deal with Burns (or trade him). Otherwise, he’ll be locked into a one-year, $24 million contract for 2024.


For now, Panthers fans can find comfort in the fact that Burns will be a Carolina Panther for the 2024 NFL season. Burns has a total of 46 sacks throughout his career and was arguably the best player on the team last season. 

Hayden Hurst Cut By Panthers

Carolina plans to release tight end Hayden Hurst before March 16. The veteran missed the last eight games of the 2023 season due to a concussion and has been cut loose just one year into a three-year, $21 million deal. Of that agreement, $13 million was guaranteed and $6 million came in the form of a signing bonus.


Cutting Hurst creates $9.9 million in dead cap and just $52,000 in savings, though the Panthers could recoup a little more money if they designate him as a post-June 1 release.

Carolina currently has $34.6 million in cap space for 2024. The plan for Dave Canales and Dan Morgan is most likely to restructure the roster, identifying players who fit their scheme and can buy into the organization’s future.

One player Morgan and Canales should keep on the roster is Adam Thielen. Outside of Chubba Hubbard (and possibly Bryce Young, depending on who you ask), Thielen was the best player on the offensive side of the ball — a true bright spot amidst an otherwise disastrous season.

Free Agency Is Here

Another player who could be released is tight end Stephen Sullivan. He’s making just $1.5 million and the Panthers lose virtually nothing by letting him go. The hope is that Morgan’s free-agent signings and draft picks will turn out better than Fritterer’s.


Free agency is upon us. Get ready for peak NFL rumors season.

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