In what most considered an expect move, the Carolina Panthers have released veteran defensive end Charles Johnson. The moves saves the Panthers around $11 million in salary cap space for the 2016 season. Johnson was entering the final year of his contract with the Panthers. Johnson also have a very down year in 2015, with only one sack and missing eight games due to injury.
This move was almost guaranteed when the Panthers franchise tagged cornerback Josh Norman, giving him a $13.9 million payday for the 2016 season, however the Panthers are still talking with Norman and his agent on a long-term deal.
This move also allows the Panthers go out and explore the free-agent DE market, which will have some big name players available. Some of the Panthers targets may be Malik Jackson, Jason Pierre-Paul, Mario Williams, Robert Ayers, among others.
WIth this move, I would fully expect the Panthers to strongly go after one of the premier pass rushers in free-agency and mostly likely land a big name. Hopefully the Panthers can get Malik Jackson away from the Broncos or Mario Williams from away from the Bills.