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IDP Fantasy Forecast: 2021 Carolina Panthers

The 2021 fantasy season is approaching quickly, @ejh1528IDP goes through which IDP’s on the Carolina Panthers will be relevant for the upcoming season?

Let’s not defensive! Ok so let us get defensive. Time to dig into the IDP’s for the fantasy winners you can snag in your draft. Dating back to last season, the Panthers were right in the middle of the road on the defensive side of the ball. The bright spot on the Panthers’ defense was none other than rookie, Jeremy Chinn. The rookie played both safety and linebacker and made it look like the Panthers got a draft-day steal in the late second round. Who else on this Panthers defense can make that big splash for your fantasy team?

Defensive Line

Brian Burns – Brian “Spider” Burns is a guy that took the sophomore slump and threw it right out the window. Burns increase his sack total by only 1.5 sacks but he did make a huge step forward with his tackles, going from 25 in 2019 to 58 in 2020. While Burns only started five games in 2019, he finished with 14 starts last year. Burns is poised for another solid year in 2021. He had a revolving door on the other side of the line and hopefully, 2020 rookie Yetur Gross-Matos can take that leap forward as well with Burns possibly getting double-teamed on the outside. He will be entering year two of the Phil Snow defense and will be more comfortable with how the system will operate, leading him to a bigger season.

According to ADP, Burns is going off the boards as DL7 (96th overall behind players such as Aaron Donald, Danielle Hunter and the Bosa brothers. His stock just keeps on getting higher and higher, so if you are looking to buy him to better do it now before it is too late. In trades, I would trade a player like Bosa (Joey) or Hunter for him. I have him as my DL6 right behind Donald. Could Burns be viewed as a top-five defensive end by season’s end? Possibly, but snag him while you can before he is in the Myles Garrett/Chase Young territory. Take Burns with confidence and possibly as your top IDP option.

Derrick Brown – He was part of the 2020 NFL Draft where the Panthers took no offensive players in the draft. With then-new head coach Matt Rhule, they wanted to reshape their defense and started that off with Derrick Brown. Brown started the season just trying to adjust to the game, however, as the season rolled along, Brown got more familiar with the game and started to make a splash. He only finished with two sacks on the year but did have four pass deflections with 34 tackles.

Brown may not be the biggest stat stuffer but there is a reason he was put on this list, DT premium. There has been a push for using this in many fantasy leagues. As of right now, Brown is going undrafted and can be picked up on the cheap after or the draft or as a throw-in when it comes to trades. We should see an increase in his stats this year with him being more familiar with the system. If your league is not DT premium, mind your expectations from Brown this season and beyond.



Shaq Thompson – Last year was Shaq Thompson‘s best of his career. He racked up 114 tackles, six tackles for a loss and five pass deflections. Ever since long time Panther Thomas Davis left in 2018 and All-pro Luke Kuechly retired at the end of the 2019 season, Thompson has been the leader of the Panthers linebacking core. They have been trying to find a compliment for him since. Thompson continues to rack up the tackles and make plays on defense. Hopefully, another season under his belt with Phil Snow as the defensive coordinator can lead to bigger and better things in the long run.

Currently, Thompson is going off the boards as LB23, behind fellow linebackers Eric Kendricks, Myles Jack and Jerome Baker. He finished the 2020 season as LB30 and LB 31 in 2019. Thompson has shown consistency which helps maintain his value. Expect to see him getting around the same stats. If you can get him as your LB2 or even your LB1 you won’t be disappointed. When it comes to trade

Haason Reddick – Last season with the Arizona Cardinals, Haason Reddick took down the quarterback 12.5 times, shattering his personal best, which was four. He played outside linebacker, giving him the big bump in sacks. The Cardinals took Zaven Collins and Isaiah Simmons in the past two drafts, leaving Reddick as a casualty. In steps the Panthers. He will play on the outside, opposite of Thompson.

When it comes to his stat projections, if he continues to play on the outside he could be in line for another double-digit sack season. Reddick is going off the board as LB34, roughly 248th overall in start-up drafts. He isn’t going too far behind Thompson. In sack-heavy leagues, Reddick could see a slight bump in ADP as the offseason rolls along. He still managed 63 tackles and 15 tackles for a loss which his nice sack count. Reddick might have

Denzel Perryman – He a six-year vet, all with the Chargers. Denzel Perryman lost his middle linebacker spot to last year’s rookie Kenneth Murray. He will get a chance to reclaim it in Carolina. The Panthers signed Perryman to a two-year contract and will be playing alongside the aforementioned Thompson and Reddick. While also not a stat stuffer, Perryman is a solid tackler and isn’t afraid to get down and dirty. He played in 13 games but only started six of them. Perryman still accumulated 48 tackles and three tackles for a loss.

Over the past few years, the Panthers have had solid success with the middle linebacker position. Perryman is in for a load of work and big shoes to fill. While with the Chargers, he was in the middle of the road sustaining mild production. Perryman is going off the boards in start-up dynasty leagues as LB50, the 337th player overall. This could be some great value in the later rounds of drafts. If you are wanting to trade for him, shoot low and proceed from there. He doesn’t scream breakout but the possibility is there.

Defensive Back

Credit: Charlotte Observer

Jeremy Chinn – He is probably one of the best players to come out of the 2020 NFL Draft. The Panthers selected him in the late second round, trading back up into the round to snag the Southern Illinois product. While playing safety, Jeremy Chinn did it all for the Panthers. However, when the Panthers were having issues in the linebacker core, Chinn stepped up in a huge way. He racked up 117 tackles, five pass deflections, one interception and two defensive touchdowns. It was reported here that he will be playing safety for the 2021 season. He will more than likely dabble in again at linebacker if the Panthers need his services.

As of the July 2021 ADP for, Chinn is coming off the boards as DB1. These are very lofty expectations for the sophomore safety. Chinn showed what he was capable of last season and there are many hoping that he can do it or more again this season. There might be a slight drop in his stat line this season but he still should be drafted as a top-three defensive back. Trading for Chinn is easier said than done, especially in dynasty leagues.


The Panthers have some eye-popping players on defense that could breakout big in 2021. While Chinn, Burns and Thompson lead the way, keep an eye on players such as Jermaine Carter Jr., Yetur Gross-Matos and even rookie Jaycee Horn.

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed the article. You can find me on Twitter @ejh1528IDP. Feel free to shoot me any draft, IDP (NFL or Devy) questions you may have. You can check out my NFL Draft Content here and my previous Dynasty Nerds articles here. Are you a #NerdHerd member yet? For just $2.99/month, you get access to rankings, extra podcasts, the buy/sell tool, and more on the way.

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