Carolina Panthers Offensive Depth Chart: Off-Season Report Cards

Panthers Offensive Depth Chart

After a disappointing 7-9 2018 campaign, the Carolina Panthers front office vowed to shape their franchise into a contender using the NFL’s offseason period. The group struck gold early in the off-season, drafting promising rookies like Brian Burns and Greg Little, while also picking up proven veterans like Matt Paradis and Gerald McCoy. Now with the NFL’s free agency period coming to a close, teams are putting the finishing touches on their rosters. With that being said, most rosters likely won’t see much change until teams announce their final 53-man squads later on. Today, we will be taking an in-depth look at each position on the Panthers offensive depth chart and grading it respectively. So without further ado, lets jump right into the action!

Off-Season Report Cards: Grading the Carolina Panthers Offensive Depth Chart


First up on the list is the quarterbacks. After selecting West Virginia gunslinger Will Grier in the 2019 NFL Draft, the Panthers currently hold four signal callers on their roster. This number is likely to change, however, seeing as the average team carries three throughout the season. Grier will likely have the lead backup spot, allowing the Panthers to have a competent first replacement if Cam Newton‘s shoulder forces him to miss time.

Of course, Cam is the surefire starter, and fans around the league should look at Newton as a dark horse candidate for the MVP award. Newton certainly possesses the ability to lead this star-studded Panthers team back to the Super Bowl, but his health remains the biggest variable in that situation. With the Panthers possessing competent backups like Will Grier, Kyle Allen, and Taylor Heinicke, the organization should be confident that the quarterback room is among the best in the league, giving them piece of mind should Cam go down.

Overall Grade: A

Running Backs

Next up on the list, we have the running backs. After the Panthers drafted Florida product Jordan Scarlett and signed undrafted free agent Elijah Holyfield, the team’s depth chart encompassed six running backs. With that number estimated to drop down to somewhere near three, the competition will be fierce during training camp. With Christian McCaffrey coming off an absolutely monster season in 2018, the Panthers will look to lighten his workload in 2019. Jordan Scarlett has seemingly emerged as the likely RB2 for the Panthers, with Holyfield being hinted as the third option for the team.

The Panthers will look to shore up Scarlett’s catching ability and help develop him into a key rotational piece for the team. While Holyfield didn’t wow any scouts with his 40 time during the Combine, he seems to be oozing with potential. He could potentially solidify himself as the Panthers RB3 with a nice training camp. Having a competent third option like Holyfield on the roster, the Panthers should feel good about the depth they possess at the running back position. While there are still some unknowns that remain surrounding this young running back squad, the group is packed full of potential and could emerge as one of the premier rushing units in the NFL next season.

Overall Grade: B+


There aren’t really any questions surround the fullback position on the Panthers’ roster going into 2019, so we will keep this short and sweet. Alex Armah has been a steady rock at this position for the Panthers and likely will remain this way in the foreseeable future.

Overall Grade: B+

Tight End

Coming in next on our list are the tight ends. With Greg Olsen opting to return to the field once more in 2019, the tight end position will be a very solid group. The squad encompasses intriguing young tight end Ian Thomas, who filled in nicely in 2018 when Olsen missed time with injuries. The position is also filled with several other interesting young players, such as Chris Manhertz and Jason Vander Laan, whom the Panthers will be looking to get more involved in the offense as the team looks to take some of the load off of the shoulders of Olsen. Overall, the Panthers should feel good when looking at how their group of tight ends stacks up against the rest of the league.

Overall Grade: B

Wide Receivers

When looking at the Panthers wide receiving core, one word comes to mind: youth. With the young pair of D.J. Moore and Curtis Samuel holding down the main two wide receiver positions, the Panthers are placing alot of pressure on the young players’ shoulders. To help take some of the load off of them, the Panthers brought in veteran pass-catcher Chris Hogan to man the slot receiver position and provide superstar Cam Newton with a pair of steady veteran hands.

The Panthers have loaded the wide receiver position full of talent going into training camp, with the roster currently carrying 11 pass-catchers. The team also brought in Aldrick Robinson and the previously-mentioned Chris Hogan in free agency to compliment veterans like Jarius Wright and Torrey Smith, who were already on the roster prior to free agency. The Panthers exited free agency with one of the most talented and underrated wide receiving cores in the NFC, and Panthers’ fans should rest assured that this unit can show up when needed.

Overall Grade: B+

Left Guard

Coming in at number six on our list is the left guard position. During 2018, veteran guard Greg Van Roten locked down this position for the Panthers, and 2019 will likely be no different. Van Roten started every game for the Panthers last season, with the 29-year-old becoming one of the few bright spots on a previously disappointing offensive line. Behind Van Roten is Clemson guard Taylor Hearn, who appeared in four games for the Panthers last season. Hearn is a nice rotational piece for the Panthers, allowing them to give Van Roten several rests down the stretch of a hard-fought game. Looking at the unit as a whole, they should hold their own against opposing teams, allowing Newton to sit back and have more time to pass the football.

Overall Grade: B

Left Tackle

Last year, the left tackle position was held down by Western Michigan product Taylor Moton, who started every game for the Panthers. The 25-year-old proved to not only the fans but also the front office that he could play, leaving him the clear-cut favorite to start in 2019. The Panthers will be looking to get another productive season out of Moton, seeing as he will have one full NFL campaign under his belt.

Backing up Moton is the Panthers second-round draft choice of 2019 in Greg Little. Little is expected to come in and hone his skills behind veterans like Moton, putting him in less of a position of pressure. Unlike his other draft-mate, Brian Burns, Little won’t be forced to produce too much during his rookie season, seeing as he will be used mostly as a rotational piece. Panthers’ fans should feel comfortable with this unit as a whole, seeing as it is led by a competent veteran in Moton, while also being supported by two fiery young talents in Little and Dillon Gordon.

Overall Grade: B


With the retirement of Ryan Kalil being announced earlier in the off-season, the Panthers front office was forced to go out and find a replacement veteran to man the position. And boy did they do so. The Panthers brought in one of the league’s premier centers in Matt Paradis to secure the vital position for the team. Coming off a season-ending injury, Paradis is hungry and ready to hit the football field once more. This signing proved that the Panthers were going all in on operation “protect QB1” this off-season, seeing as Newton was banged up way too much during the 2018 season.

Behind Paradis sits competent backup Tyler Larsen. Larsen appeared in every game last season, starting three times during the 16-game campaign. The University of Utah product provides the Panthers with adequate depth at the center position, just in case Paradis isn’t fully healthy during 2019. Overall, the Panthers checked all the boxes of the center position during free agency, leaving Panthers fans hoping the newcomer in Paradis can help lead an offensive line who left a lot to be desired in 2018.

Overall Grade: B+

Right Guard

Next up on our list is the right guard position. The Panthers have one of the best guards in the NFL in Trai Turner at right guard, and the team is hoping they can grab another productive season out of the Louisiana native. The 26-year-old is a Pro Bowl caliber guard, but has struggled to remain healthy throughout a full season. In the past two years, Turner only appeared in 13 games in each season respectively. With that being said, the Panthers need good depth at that position. Behind Turner on the depth chart is Dorian Johnson.

Johnson played college ball at the University of Pittsburg before signing with the Houston Texans in 2017. The 24-year-old was promoted to the active roster during last season to provide the team with depth at the right guard position, but never saw the field. While fans can be sure Johnson will provide the team with depth at the right guard position, it seems likely the organization will move someone like rookie Greg Little over to the position in the event of an injury to Turner.

With that being said, this position will garner at least a “B-” simply because you have a Pro Bowl talent filling the spot. But that doesn’t mean that the Panthers won’t be focused on the backup position during training camp. Overall, the Panthers should be fine at this position going into 2019, just as long as Turner can stay healthy for a good period of time.

Overall Grade: B-

Right Tackle

And for the final position on this list, we have the right tackle spot. After walking away from the Panthers to find a bigger deal on the open market, Daryl Williams was unable to find the contract he had been seeking in free agency. With that being said, the Panthers decided to bring the veteran back on a one-year “prove it” deal. If Williams can prove he is still one of the best tackles in the league, like he did several years ago, he will get paid in the upcoming off-season. Money is a huge motivator, so Panthers’ fans should expect Williams to come out of the gates running, seeing as he is eyeing that long term contract. Behind Williams is 26-year-old Ian Silberman.

Silberman has yet to appear in an NFL game in his career, which could lead some Panthers fans to worry. But, the depth chart also includes names like Dennis Daley and Kitt O’Brien, competent backups who can step up when needed. With Williams being the only right tackle on the roster to actually appear in an NFL game, much of the weight will be on his shoulders. Hopefully, the Panthers will help develop the backup right tackles during training camp and put many fans’ worries to rest. If Williams can stay healthy, then the Panthers should be set at this position, which is music to every fan’s ears.

Overall Grade: C

The Takeaways

After taking an in-depth look at every position on the offensive depth chart, fans should rest assured that the Panthers have a very solid offensive core. If Newton can stay healthy, this unit is in for a big year. Of course, that will require production from every position on the field, but that seems like no problem for this roster. If the Panthers can avoid injury for the most part in 2019, this team should enjoy great success. And with a talented quarterback like Newton at the helm of this team, the sky is truly the limit.

To view the depth chart that was used to help make this article, click here.

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