Panthers Bolster Backfield With Undrafted Free Agent Signing

Carolina added an electrifying FCS running back after the 2024 NFL Draft as an undrafted free agent.
NFL Combine
NFL Combine / Stacy Revere/GettyImages

The Carolina Panthers used three out of their seven picks in the 2024 NFL Draft to give former No. 1 overall pick Bryce Young more weapons. 

It was expected that the Panthers would draft a wide receiver (Xavier Legette) and tight end (Ja’Tavion Sanders) as those were two positions of need. However, most Carolina fans likely didn’t have the team taking a running back in the draft, with them having Miles Sanders and Chuba Hubbard.

Despite having Sanders and Hubbard, the Panthers took former Texas running back Jonathan Brooks with the No. 46 overall pick in the second round. Brooks was viewed as the best running back in this year’s class, who could become the Panthers’ lead back in the future.

However, Brooks wasn’t the only running back Carolina added during draft weekend as they signed former Monmouth standout Jaden Shirden as an undrafted free agent. 

Shirden was one of the most explosive running backs in the FCS this past season and had a good NFL scouting combine where he ran a 4.45 40-yard dash. 

The former Monmouth star isn’t the biggest running back, as he stands in at 5-foot-8 and 187 lbs. However, as Football Gameplan’s Emory Hunt always says, size is not a skill. Shirden is a game-breaker and a candidate to rip off 20-plus runs.

This past season, Shirden had 1,478 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns on 221 carries. Over his three-year career with the Hawks, the first-team FCS All-American posted 3,697 rushing yards and 26 touchdowns.

The signing of Shirden will go under the radar, especially with the selection of Brooks, but do not be surprised to see the former Monmouth star make some noise in training camp.

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