Panthers make astonishing $27 million move to help unlock Bryce Young’s full potential

The Panthers just got a whole lot stronger.

A big headache that haunted the Carolina Panthers repeatedly last season was how easy it was to pick off and put Bryce Young down. The first overall pick struggled to get passes off his offensive line and it was starting to look like the squad was giving up on him after his rookie year. But, they still have a lot of patience left in the tank. They brought in Dave Canales to assist him in being an effective signal caller. Now, they are getting him more help in NFL Free Agency through Damien Lewis.

The Panthers gave Damien Lewis a hefty contract that spans four years, per Jordan Schultz of Bleacher Report. He gets a $53 million contract with $26 million of it guaranteed at signing. The other $27 million will be given to him in the first two years of the deal. He now joins Robert Hunt as the other NFL Free Agency acquisition to bolster the Panthers’ offensive line.

These moves are clearly adding up to the plan of having the Panthers’ offense run the ball more. With Bryce Young’s struggles not being a problem solved overnight with Dave Canales, they needed to find a way to get some yardage and points on the board. Hunt and Lewis have developed a reputation for creating a big amount of space right off the snap. Furthermore, these are perfect conditions for an elite rushing game to develop out of their system.

What Lewis brings to the Panthers

Carolina Panthers quarterback Bryce Young (9) leaves the field after the game at Bank of America Stadium
© Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Familiarity is something that Lewis offers that most other offensive linemen do not have. He knows how to protect quarterbacks that have been handled by Coach Canales and Coach Brad Idzik. They were together in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers system and have now been reunited inside the Panthers system.

The other reason the Panthers reeled him in is his production. He managed to only allow three sacks despite playing 926 offensive snaps last season. Moreover, Lewis also does not commit too many mistakes which is integral for any lineman. He only accrued four of them in the past season. His PFF grade might be at 59.6 but with the help of Panthers coaches, he can bring it back up.

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About the Author

Jay is a lifelong motorsports and tennis fan. His need for speed may no longer be on the grid or courts but has stayed with him through writing.

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