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Panthers' Jeremy Chinn open to any position: 'You can use me wherever, as long as you're using me'

If your immediate thought upon hearing the "news" earlier this month that the Carolina Panthers planned to move Jeremy Chinn to a full-time safety role, was "I thought he was a safety?" you weren't alone.

Chinn played all over the formation as a rookie, from linebacker to safety, as the Panthers tried to put the playmaking defender in a position to make tackles.

Ahead of training camp next month, Chinn told SiriusXM NFL Radio that the plan all along was to use him in a jack-of-all-trades role. Defensive coordinator Phil Snow told Chinn before last season he wouldn't have a defined role.

"(Snow) told me that he had plans for me starting early," Chinn said. "He really didn't have a position for me, whether it be linebacker or safety. He actually kinda had like a flex position. So he was like, 'You're gonna have to learn this position.' I was like, 'All right.' I didn't know what it was. I was like all right whatever it is, I'll be ready for it. I come in, and actually, they play me at SAM linebacker starting primarily. I moved back to safety, as well, throughout the season. Really, I just came in with a mindset -- you can use me wherever, as long as you're using me."

According to Pro Football Focus, Chinn lined up in the box on 392 snaps, along the D-line on 84, at slot corner 230 times, at wide corner 24, and as a free safety 237 snaps. For those keeping track, that's 491 snaps in a DB role and 476 snaps more of an LB role.

The Panthers' plan to utilize Chinn deeper is in part to get the 220-pounder away from blockers and into a position to fly toward the ball without getting caught in the wash.

Given the flexibility Chinn displayed as a rookie, expect Snow to continue to utilize the youngster in various roles, even if he'll primarily be defined as a safety moving forward.

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