The 2011 free agency period is going to be fast, fun and rapid; the Carolina Panthers aren't usually busy during the free agency period, but this year could be different.
If the players vote yes to the new labor agreement, teams will have three days to re-sign their players until free agency begins.
Carolina has a lot of key players they will need to seriously consider re-signing, while also figuring out whether to keep receiver Steve Smith.
This is my opinion of who Carolina should bring in for their 2011 free agent class.
It's not often I feel sorry for a professional athlete, but I honestly do feel very sorry for Carolina linebacker Thomas Davis.
Davis was drafted as a Safety, played one season at the position, then made the transition to linebacker, putting on a lot of weight and muscle.
It took a couple of years, but Davis was playing as well as any linebacker in the NFL before he went down with a season-ending injury in 2010.
After months of recovery, he went down with the same injury last season during training camp.
Although its doubtful he can return to how he played in 2010, there is still potential for Davis, who is only 28.
Of all the potential big-name free agents Carolina has, Davis is the most likely, and cheapest option to re-sign with the team.
Raise your hand if coming into the 2011 season, you predicted Julius Peppers' replacement to end the season with 11.5 sacks.
Put your hand down, liar.
Johnson seemingly came out of nowhere to help Panther fans forget all about defensive end Julius Peppers, who ran from Carolina to sign with the Chicago Bears.
Carolina must keep Johnson, who is their only strength at defensive line.
Carolina's "smash and dash" two-headed monster of DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart did not have the same success last season as it did in 2011, but that doesn't mean Carolina should give up on Williams and let him walk.
Before you completely disagree with every opinion that ever comes out of my mouth again, hear me out.
I'm not saying that I expect Carolina to bring back Delhomme, start at quarterback, and save the franchise again like he did in 2003.
God forbid if the Panthers ever gave Jake Delhomme the starting quarterback position again.
However, Carolina is in desperate need of a veteran, mentor quarterback, and I can't think of anyone better then Delhomme, who is expected to be released by Cleveland.
For starters, Carolina would probably be the only team in the league with any interest at all in Delhomme. Also, he would be pretty cheap to bring in.
At one time, Jake Delhomme was the most loved man in North Carolina. He was a hero for all Carolina fans around; bringing him back would give Carolina a sense of hope in returning to the level this team once played at.
Jake Delhomme is done playing in the NFL. The fans, the coaches and Delhomme himself has accepted that. But there is no one better for a mentor role than Delhomme.
Carolina drafted defensive tackles Terrell McClain and Sione Fua in the third round of the 2011 NFL Draft, but that might not be enough to improve one of the worst defensive lines in the league.
Bringing in a defensive tackle like Warren is exactly what Carolina needs. A cheap, big-bodied veteran who can both mentor and make an impact on the line.
A couple years back, Carolina made a move and brought in defensive tackles Ma'ake Kemoeatu and Damione Lewis; two average defensive tackles, who together, made an impact.
This year, Carolina should do the same with their cornerback position.
While signing Jonathan Joseph or another big-name free agent cornerback is always an option, I believe Carolina should do the cheaper option, and sign two average cornerbacks, who together, will make an impact.
While Carolina has one of the best linebacker corps in the NFL, they may have to let either James Anderson or Thomas Davis walk.
If they do choose to let one, or even both, walk, Kevin Burnett could be a good option for Carolina.
While he has played in the middle most of his career, he could slide to the outside, which would allow Jon Beason to play at middle again, where he plays best.
The defensive end-turned-linebacker struggled last season in the 3-4 defense and was cut by Washington before the lockout began.
At age 32, Carter still has a lot of gas left in the tank, after recording 11 sacks just two years ago at defensive end.
Carter has the ability to come right in and start, helping improve this defensive line that struggled last season.
Mike Sims-Walker came out of nowhere two seasons ago and became the go-to-guy on the Jaguars offense.
Last season, however, Sims-Walker took a dip in his production that led to his release pre-lockout.
The status of longtime Panthers' receiver Steve Smith is up in the air, but regardless of if he stays, Carolina should sign Sims-Walker to be their No. 2 guy.
Tommie Harris has been one of the most inconsistent players in recent years; playing at a Pro Bowl level one season, then dropping out of the starting lineup the next.
However, with the right motivation, Harris is one of the top defensive tackles in the league. New head coach Ron Rivera was the defensive coordinator of the Chicago Bears during Harris' best seasons.
Carolina needs help along the offensive line, and I believe Robert Gallery fits perfectly in Carolina.
Although he's not the best offensive linemen around, he's got that dirty look and streak that the Panthers need along their offensive line.