The NFL Draft is officially over, but that doesn’t mean that the Carolina Panthers cannot improve their team between now and the start of the 2021 NFL season. There are still quite a few interesting free agents on the open market, and Pro Football Focus believes that cornerback Brian Poole would be a perfect fit for the Carolina Panthers.
PFF Lists Brian Poole As Carolina Panthers Free Agent Fit
The Carolina Panthers have a lot of young talent on their defense, but they need to add a few more experienced veterans if they want to slow down elite passing attacks like the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The best way to do that is by signing some cost-effective free agents, and Brian Poole could be the man for the job.
Carolina selected arguably the NFL Draft’s best cornerback in Jaycee Horn, but he cannot do it alone. Carolina needs a slot cornerback, and Poole is the best one left on the market. Calling him “one of the best nickel defenders in the league”, Pro Football Focus has Poole as the NFL’s sixth-best slot defender since the start of the 2019 season, per their grading system. Additionally, PFF goes on to add that Poole is one of the better run defenders in the league, which is a big deal when you share a division with Alvin Kamara.
Predicting NFL contracts isn’t easy, but the Carolina Panthers should have all the salary space necessary to sign a guy like Poole. According to Over the Cap, the team currently has $15.1 million in available spending money. This number will drop a bit when Carolina signs their rookie class, but they should still have plenty of money available to sign the experienced slot cornerback.
Carolina has one of the youngest defenses in football, as their 24th overall finish in EPA/play allowed doesn’t tell the full story when it comes to the potential of this unit. The building blocks are there, and another veteran or two could create an above-average defense. This team will ultimately go as far as Sam Darnold can take them, but improving the defense is a massive part of this rebuild.
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