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Panthers 2022 season opener countdown: 26 days to go

We’re counting down the days until the Panthers kick off the 2022 season.

Philadelphia Eagles v Carolina Panthers Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

We’re 26 days away from the Panthers 2022 season opener, so that means today’s countdown piece is devoted to No. 26 on the roster — cornerback Donte Jackson.

The Panthers drafted the 26-year-old Jackson (5’10, 180) in the second round (No. 55 overall) of the 2018 NFL Draft. He played college football at LSU, where he totaled 116 tackles, 4 tackles for loss, 4 interceptions, 22 pass breakups and 1 sack in 37 games (24 starts). The Panthers signed Jackson to a 3-year, $31.5 million contract extension in March.

Here’s a brief summary of his career so far, courtesy of the team’s website:

Started 12 games before going on injured reserve with a groin injury. Made 61 tackles and two interceptions with a team-high 10 pass deflections.

Battled a toe injury to play in 14 games with 13 starts in 2020. Led the team with three interceptions and 11 passes defensed. Made 34 tackles, including one tackle for loss.

Played in 13 games with 10 starts for Carolina in 2019. Tallied 40 tackles while tying for the team lead with three interceptions. Notched eight pass deflections.

Started all 16 games for Carolina in 2018. Tallied 75 tackles, one sack, one forced fumble, seven passes defensed and four interceptions, tying for seventh in the NFL in interceptions and first among rookies.

Secured a career-high two interceptions against Cincinnati in Week 3 (9/23/18), including one late in the fourth quarter that sealed the team’s victory.

Jackson is firmly planted as a starter at cornerback and will see plenty of playing time in a rotation with CJ Henderson and Jaycee Horn, and his spot on the 53-man roster — and at the top of the depth chart — is all but guaranteed.

What are you expecting from Jackson this year, Panthers fans? Do you think he’ll have a breakout year? Why or why not? Share your thoughts with us!