Carolina Panthers

NFC South

Defensive tackle Star Lotulelei is expected to sign a five-year deal with the Buffalo Bills when the league year begins on Wednesday, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. (Source: Adam Schefter)

Fantasy Impact: Lotulelei played for Bills head coach Sean McDermott when the latter was the defensive coordinator with the Carolina Panthers. The Bills traded Marcell Dareus last season and Kyle Williams is currently a free agent, so this signing fills an obvious need.

Category: Transactions

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport is reporting that the Jaguars have agreed to terms with offensive guard Andrew Norwell on a five-year deal worth $66.5 million. (Source: Ian Rapoport on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: The contract also comes with $30 million guaranteed, giving him the second-most guaranteed money among offensive guards in the NFL. It's a great signing by them, as Norwell will immediately upgrade the run-game. There were multiple teams vying for his services, too, and you now know why the Jaguars weren't able to retain wide receiver Allen Robinson. The player who benefits most from this move is Leonard Fournette, though he was already being considered a first-round pick in fantasy drafts.

Category: Transactions

NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport is reporting the Carolina Panthers and K Graham Gano have agreed to terms on a four-year deal on Tuesday. (Source: Ian Rapoport on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Just hours before the franchise tag deadline which expires at 4pm Tuesday, the Panthers struck a deal with Gano, who was going to receive the tag if an extension was not agreed upon. One of the more consistent fantasy kickers in the past two seasons, Gano should once again be viewed a top 10 option in 2018 redraft formats. He’s tied to the Panthers until he’s 34.

Category: Transactions

Jonathan Stewart released

Wed, Feb 28th 11:34am EST
By Anthony Cervino

ESPN's Adam Schefter is reporting the Carolina Panthers have released RB Jonathan Stewart on Wednesday. (Source: Adam Schefter on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: After 10 seasons in Carolina, the Panthers have released Stewart, the 13th overall pick in the 2008 draft. His release comes to no surprise since he's coming off of the worst statistical seasons of his career. Totaling 732 yards and seven touchdowns on 206 touches, he was a disappointment for his fantasy owners who believed he'd still make an impact in the wake of the addition of Christian McCaffrey. His touchdown production was the 30-year-old RB's saving grace. Without Stewart, the Panthers are in immediate need of an early-down back. Expect them to address this vacancy in both the free agent market and the upcoming NFL Draft.

Category: Transactions

By cutting Kurt Coleman and Charles Johnson gives the Panthers cap space to explore options. Saving the team $5.9 million in salary cap space. (Source:

Fantasy Impact: Johnson was rumored to be a casualty, but Coleman's release for a mere $2.65 million was somewhat out of the blue. Look for Coleman to latch on somewhere as a possible starter as he still showed he has fuel left in the tank in 2017.

By cutting Kurt Coleman and Charles Johnson gives the Panthers cap space to explore options. Saving the team $5.9 million in salary cap space (Source:

Fantasy Impact: As rumored Johnson and his cap had to go after playing very little in 2017. He may latch on somewhere else in 2018, it would likely be a depth or heavy rotational player.

Kuechly recently underwent a procedure on his right shoulder, he skipped last month’s Pro Bowl because of an unspecified injury. It's now obvious this upcoming procedure and injury may have been the reason. (Source:

Fantasy Impact: With no timetable yet on when Kuechly will be able to return to action, his IDP owner should think if there are no setbacks he should be ready to go when camp rolls around this summer.

Category: Injury Updates

Cam Newton suffered ligament and cartilage damage to his knee in the Wild Card loss to the Saints. An MRI revealed the extent of the injury and no surgery is planned. Dr. David Chao writes, "This may be cause for some long-term concern. The team has said no surgery is required. It is true that some ligaments may heal with time, and swelling can improve. But cartilage damage to the meniscus or articular surface is often permanent. Depending on the location and extent, it is something to keep an eye on." (Source: Dr. David Chao/San Diego Union-Tribune)

Fantasy Impact: The Panthers have a new OC in town, Norv Turner, and OTAs will be important so that he and Newton can orchestrate some greatness for the offense. Newton's injury news doesn't help matters.

Category: Injury Updates

With pending free agent Star Lotulelei possibly hitting the open market after former general manager Dave Gettleman picked up his fifth-year option for 2017 and never working out a long-term deal, Butler may find himself in a starting role in 2018. Lotulelei will not be cheap at this point in his career for Carolina to retain. His talents will be in high demand on the open market if he isn't resigned. (Source:

Fantasy Impact: Butler was Carolina's first-round pick in 2016 and has flashed at times when playing a limited role. IDP owners in fantasy football will want to monitor the situation throughout the offseason to determine if Butler could be a deep sleeper in 2018.

Thompson found himself as a beneficiary of the game flow as New Orleans leaned heavily on the passing game in the Wild Card game. He recorded a team-high tieing eight combined tackles in the loss.

Fantasy Impact: Any IDP owners in a playoff contest also benefited if the had Thompson in their lineups. He should have been a steal in most daily leagues. Thompson will enter 2018 with a question mark on his probable level of production hinging on whether Thomas Davis will return for another season. Coming into 2017 it was rumored that Carolina would get him more involved but it didn't seem to pan out so well for his IDP owners with Thomas Davis retaining his starting position. At Davis's age owners may find Thompson as a nice stash for 2018 and well worth the investment. He is well worth the risk to see how things play out.

Category: Game Recaps

James Bradberry recorded a team-high tieing eight combined tackles in the loss to New Orleans in the first round of the playoffs on Sunday.

Fantasy Impact: Bradberry had a productive game as New Orleans opened up the passing game while Carolina tried to stifle the run. Bradberry drew a lot of Michael Thomas who was targeted nine times and caught eight of those for 133 yards. Bradberry was also busy on the outside as New Orleans threw many sideline passes at the line of scrimmage. Going into 2018 Bradberry should be a serviceable cornerback in IDP leagues using that designated position in their lineups.

Category: Game Recaps

Devin Funchess was able to play despite a shoulder injury and he finished his season with 79 yards on four receptions. Funchess failed to catch a deep ball from Cam Newton which would've given the Panthers the lead but he couldn't get back to the ball. It was a solid season for Funchess as the top receiver for Cam Newton.

Fantasy Impact: Funchess will return next season as a solid WR3 with upside and especially if Christian McCaffrey or Greg Olsen misses time. The Panthers need to find other options to go with Funchess and Olsen but it will remain to be seen if they draft someone or acquire someone via free agency.

Category: Game Recaps

The Carolina Panthers D/ST allowed 22 points to the Falcons and totaled just one sack in Week 17.

Fantasy Impact: The Falcons were not particularly generous to opposing D/STs this season, but more was certainly expected out of Carolina. They did almost nothing in the two games against the Saints this season, so they'll make a poor play in DFS for the first round of the playoffs.

Category: Game Recaps

Christian McCaffrey rushed six times for 14 yards and caught five passes for 40 yards on Sunday against the Falcons.

Fantasy Impact: With Jonathan Stewart out of the game, it seemed that McCaffrey would have a great opportunity to see additional touches, but it never materialized. McCaffrey ends his season with over 1,000 total yards. He'll likely be heavily involved in the first round of the playoffs next weekend against the Saints.

Category: Game Recaps

Greg Olsen caught just one of nine targets for 10 yards on Sunday against the Dolphins.

Fantasy Impact: Cam Newton was hardly precise in his passing, so it's hard to blame Olsen. It was highly encouraging to see him get nine targets, however, giving him 27 over the last three games. He'll take on the Saints in the playoffs next week, which is a tough draw, as New Orleans allowed the second-fewest fantasy points to opposing tight ends this season.

Category: Game Recaps

Thomas Davis recorded 10 combined tackles in the loss to Atlanta in Week 17. Davis was suspended for Week 16 and finished on a strong note in this contest.

Fantasy Impact: The Panthers are heading to the playoffs and Davis's IDP owners will want to start thinking about his future in 2018. He'll be 35 years old next season and one has to wonder at what point Carolina moves on.

Category: Game Recaps

Damiere Byrd suffered a leg injury in Week 16 and has now been placed on injured reserve. Byrd returned a 103-yard kickoff return for a touchdown before leaving the game on another kickoff return. (Source:

Fantasy Impact: It's a tough blow for Byrd who was getting more involved in the offense and provided a boost on special teams with Curtis Samuel out for the season also. Kaelin Clay and Breston Bersin will step in for Byrd. Neither are fantasy options for Week 17.

Category: Injury Updates

Daryl Worley was a big part of the Panthers secondary that held Aaron Rodgers down in his return. Worley recorded an interception on a pass intended for Jordy Nelson and added seven combined tackles.

Fantasy Impact: It was a good outing for his IDP owners who may have seen the matchup putting Rodgers on the spot to make the plays. Worley could be a viable streaming play for IDP leagues again in Week 16 when Carolina hosts Tampa Bay.

Category: Game Recaps

It is the second time this season that Kawann Short has recorded two sacks in a contest. The first came in Week 5 versus the Detriot Lions. This brings his total on the year at six.

Fantasy Impact: Short has been a decent IDP play for fantasy owners this season with a stat line on the year of 41 tackles and the six sacks with one forced fumble. He'll be facing a Green Bay squad in Week 15 and his fantasy owners may want to consider him as a starter in their lineups if they are needing to insert a defensive tackle.

Category: Game Recaps

Russell Shepard caught three of five targets for 29 yards on Sunday against the Saints.

Fantasy Impact: Even without Greg Olsen, Shepard simply doesn't get the volume to be a viable wide receiver play. He's only an option in extremely deep leagues.

Category: Game Recaps