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The Panthers Are Reportedly Cutting A 2-Time Pro Bowler

Kawann Short #99 of the Carolina Panthers during the Carolina Panthers Training Camp

CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA - AUGUST 21: Kawann Short #99 of the Carolina Panthers during the Carolina Panthers Training Camp at Bank of America Stadium on August 21, 2020 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)

The Carolina Panthers joined in on the offseason fray by cutting a long-time veteran on Tuesday.

Panthers are releasing two-time, Pro-Bowl DT Kawann Short today, per source. Teams in the market for DT help now have another strong option.

— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) February 16, 2021

">According to ESPN insider Adam Schefter, the Panthers plan to release two-time Pro Bowler Kawann Short. The 32-year-old veteran defensive tackle will hit the open market and could provide suitors with experience and steady play on the defensive line. Short got off to a strong start in Carolina, playing in all 16 games during his 2013 rookie season before making nine starts in his second year. By 2015, the former Purdue defensive tackle was at the peak of his game, racking up 11 sacks and 16 tackles-for-loss on his way to a Pro Bowl nod. However, over the last few years Short has battled a handful of injuries. The Panthers veteran partially tore his rotator cuff in 2019 and made just two starts. This past year, Short made just three appearances before undergoing season-ending surgery to address another shoulder injury. Now 32, the eight-year NFL vet has a chance to still play at a high level, but his health will be a major concern for teams looking to bolster their defensive line this offseason.

Releasing Kawann Short clears up ~$8.6M in cap space for Carolina. He was in the final year of his deal and due $12.5M in base salary.

If/when healthy, he's still a disruptive interior DL. Short turned 32 earlier this month.

— Field Yates (@FieldYates) February 16, 2021

">According to ESPN's Field Yates, releasing Short will give the Panthers about an additional $8.6 million in cap space to spend this offseason. The 32-year-old was due about $12.5 million in base salary in 2021.

Releasing Short will be the first major move made by the Panthers this offseason, but not the first time the organization has been involved in discussions. Carolina reportedly pursued Matthew Stafford, offering a solid trade package before he was dealt to the Los Angeles Rams.

The Panthers will likely go after another established quarterback or draft a rookie in April's NFL Draft. After a 5-11 season in 2020, Matt Rhule will want to bounce back in his second-year in the league and give Carolina a chance to compete for the NFC South.