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The Panthers are signing LB Justin Houston to a 1-year deal

The Panthers are adding some much needed help on the edge for the 2023 season

NFL: Denver Broncos at Baltimore Ravens Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

The Panthers defense entered training camp with some question marks at both cornerback and on the edge for pass rushers. The Panthers addressed one of those questions today.

Justin Houston logged 9.5 sacks last season as a rotational pass rusher in Baltimore, and started 15 games for them in 2021. Prior to that, Houston worked in Indianapolis with Frank Reich in 2019 and 2020, so the connection makes a lot of sense.

Houston figures to be another key piece in the rotation for a Panthers defense that is transitioning to the 3-4 in 2023. Prior to this signing, the team had Brian Burns as their top edge rusher, and then needed to figure something out between Yetur Gross-Matos, Marquis Haynes, Amare Barno, and DJ Johnson among others.

The way I see it, this just strengthens that position group and I think Houston becomes the de facto pass rusher opposite Burns in clear passing situations. Carolina no longer needs to force someone to be a starter there and now can rotate more effectively to suit everyone’s skillset.

What are your thoughts, Panthers fans?