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Carolina Panthers appear to display a hybrid defense in rookie minicamp

The Panthers’ defensive line drills indicate the kind of defense we may expect to see this season.

Baltimore Ravens v Carolina Panthers Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Rookie minicamp has started, and it appears that the Carolina Panthers are going to roll with a hybrid defense this season.

The defensive line drills were a point of interest in minicamp today, featuring defensive line coach Sam Mills III running the show.

Here are some of the drills below:

According to Charlotte Observer reporter Jourdan Rodrigue, Mills III instructed the players to align in both three and four-man fronts in today’s minicamp.

This new hybrid defense contrasts the Panthers’ defensive front of years’ past: the traditional 4-3. It is time for the Panthers to consistently get to the quarterback at a rate faster than at least ten seconds, so this move seems like the right one. With the new acquisitions of Brian Burns and Christian Miller through the NFL Draft, it makes complete sense for this team to turn to a hybrid defense. Interestingly enough, both Burns and Miller came from schools that used four-man fronts. Miller thrived under Alabama coach Nick Saban’s hybrid defense, and Burns displayed his first-round potential under a primarily 4-3 defense. The learning curve shouldn’t be too worrisome for Burns, though, considering that he already has the speed to be an excellent edge rusher in both three and four-man fronts. We will continue to see how the two rookies develop and perform under a brand new NFL defense, and it’s very intriguing to see how this Panthers defense will play out moving forward.


What do you think of this new hybrid defense?

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  • 75%
    I love it
    (831 votes)
  • 0%
    I hate it
    (6 votes)
  • 24%
    Somewhere in between
    (266 votes)
1103 votes total Vote Now