Here’s The Game Day’s tip on the Carolina Panthers 2021 Make NFL Playoffs bet. See what our pick is for wagering on this 2021 NFL futures bet.
Panthers 2021 Make NFL Playoffs Bet: Pick Yes Or No For Carolina?
Carolina: Make Playoffs In 2021 Season?
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Carolina Panthers 2021 Schedule Opponents
- Atlanta Falcons
- New Orleans Saints
- Minnesota Vikings
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- Philadelphia Eagles
- New England Patriots
- New York Jets
- Washington Football Team
- @Arizona Cardinals
- @Atlanta Falcons
- @Dallas Cowboys
- @Miami Dolphins
- @Buffalo Bills
- @New Orleans Saints
- @New York Giants
- @Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- @Houston Texans
The Panthers are set to enter year two of the Matt Rhule era in 2021. While they were only 5-11, the Panthers were not an easy out, losing six games by fewer than seven points. The Panthers had a rough-go from the start, however.
In Week 3, all-world RB Christian McCaffrey suffered his first of a multitude of injuries (high ankle sprain, AC joint sprain, thigh) that would ultimately cost him 13 games in 2021. He briefly returned in Week 9 but was once again held out for the duration of the campaign.
McCaffrey’s absence was not the only reason why Carolina’s offense sputtered at times. The onus? QB Teddy Bridgewater. Despite managing three wideouts to accumulate north of 1,000 total yards apiece — Curtis Samuel, D.J. Moore, Robby Anderson — Bridgewater only threw for 15 touchdown passes, a new underwhelming career-high, while rushing for five more.
Carolina’s offense was not the only issue in 2020. Since the Panthers used their 2020 draft to select all defensive assets, they knew they had a lot of work to do with so much youth. The Panthers’ defense finished 18th in points per game surrendered, better than expected, a testament to DC Phil Snow.
Rhule and GM Scott Fitterer did not waste much time finding out what worked and what didn’t. The Panthers were busy this offseason with a vast amount of player personnel movement with the hopes of turning it around in 2021.
2021 Carolina Panthers Key Losses
- QB Teddy Bridgewater
- RB Mike Davis
- WR Curtis Samuel
- TE Chris Manhertz
- FB Alex Armah
- C Tyler Larson
- IDL Zach Kerr
2021 Carolina Panthers Key Additions/2021 NFL Draft Picks
- QB Sam Darnold
- CB A.J. Bouye
- LB Denzel Perryman
- LB Haason Reddick
- TE Dan Arnold
- OL Cameron Erving
- CB Jaycee Horn
- WR Terrace Marshall Jr.
- RB Chuba Hubbard
- OL Brady Christensen
- TE Tommy Tremble
Starting at the top, the Panthers absolutely knew Bridgewater was not the guy to lead the team to the promised land. So one year into a three-year deal, Carolina shipped the failed starter to Denver. Rather than using their 8th overall pick in the 2021 draft to select their quarterback of the future, the Panthers traded for QB Sam Darnold, a failed first-round pick from Adam Gase’s Jets.
A reclamation project for OC Joe Brady, it is clear the Panthers believe they can get Darnold to do what the Jets, primarily Gase, could not, which is to be a productive and winning NFL starter.
Another tremendous change to Carolina’s offense was losing versatile WR Curtis Samuel in free agency to Washington. Despite a slow start, Samuel finished 2020 strong. Strong enough to earn a hefty contract from the upstart Football Team.
Yes, Carolina lost key players, but their free-agent and draft additions prove Rhule has a plan. As I noted above, the Panthers used all their 2020 draft capital on defense. They weren’t done there on that side of the football. Bringing in players that include Reddick and Perryman will solidify their front seven, while the additions of Bouye and Horn will bolster the back-end.
Offensively, the panthers did acquire some help. Two key losses for the Panthers came in the form of Armhah and Manhertz. They may not produce a ton of yards or touchdowns, but they are key blocking assets and tone setters. In the wake of those losses, the Panthers selected TE Tommy Tremble in the third round of the NFL Draft. Tremble is touted as the best incoming prospect blocking tight end while also being viewed as a true H-back — cc Frank Wycheck. While Tremble isn’t much of a receiver, he could always develop at the pro level, but it’s not like the Panthers heavily utilized their tight end room in the passing game anyways in Brady’s system last season.
To circumvent the departure of Samuel, the Panthers drafted Marshall, who some believe could emerge as the eventual starter in two-wide sets ahead of Anderson.
Panthers 2021 Make NFL Playoffs Bet: Yes Or No For Carolina?
Panthers Make 2021 NFL Playoffs? NO (-350)
Although the Panthers made a laundry list of personnel moves this offseason, they are still a year away from contending for a playoff berth. Not only do they play in the NFC South, a division that includes the reigning, defending, and undisputed Super Bowl champs, but they also get the up-and-coming Falcons and the Saints, a team that is never an easy out.
Outside of their own division, which includes two teams that won 10+ games last season, the Panthers only play two other clubs that reached the double-digit win plateau. Though they will get the Cowboys and Patriots, two teams expected to improve next season, Carolina’s schedule remains favorable.
Still, despite their desirable schedule, the fact that there are so many unknowns surrounding the quarterback position is enough to keep the Panthers out of the postseason again in 2021.