4 Panthers players the Vikings should target after Matt Rhule’s firing

(Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports) Brian Burns
(Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports) Brian Burns /
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Which Carolina Panthers players could the Minnesota Vikings target via trade after the team fired head coach Matt Rhule?

After the inevitable finally happened and Matt Rhule was dismissed as Carolina Panthers head coach, rumors have been flying about a potential fire sale as the organization looks to formulate a long-term plan for progression. Something that should interest the Minnesota Vikings and other teams planning to contend in 2022.

Minnesota’s impressive 4-1 start comes with increased expectations. It hasn’t been perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but head coach Kevin O’Connell has the fanbase believing a deep postseason run is well within their capabilities with additional improvements.

The Vikings aren’t blessed with much salary-cap space. But striking with conviction if Carolina is receptive to moving some of its top stars is a tempting proposition whichever way one looks at it.

With this in mind, here are four Panthers players that Minnesota could potentially target via trade in this scenario.

Player No. 1

Minnesota Vikings
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Derrick Brown /

Derrick Brown – DT

After concerns were raised about Derrick Brown‘s ability to live up to the heights expected of a former No. 7 overall selection, the stout defensive tackle has answered these and more through five weeks. The former Auburn standout has been a commanding force on the interior, wreaking havoc and pushing the line of scrimmage almost single-handedly for others around him to do damage.

Brown doesn’t fill up the stat sheet, but one look at the game tape is proof of just what a special player he is. Someone that would enhance a Vikings defensive front that’s struggled on occasions in 2022.

Putting Brown alongside the likes of Dalvin Tomlinson and Harrison Phillips would be formidable. This could also provide more space for Danielle Hunter and Za’Darius Smith to fly off the edge.