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How does Darnold trade change the Panthers’ draft strategy?

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The Panthers draft needs in 2021 have changed over the last few days…

Now that Carolina has their quarterback in Sam Darnold, what does this mean for their draft?

The Carolina Panthers currently hold the eighth pick in this year’s draft.

Some NFL writers and analysts had quarterback Trey Lance from North Dakota State being taken with the eighth overall pick, but now Carolina have traded for a quarterback that looks very unlikely.

Instead, they will most likely use the pick to fill another team need.


Outside of Trey Lance, analysts have also put tight end Kyle Pitts from the University of Florida as the Panthers’ first round selection.

The Panthers have holes on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball. Now that they have a young quarterback in Sam Darnold, they can start to build around him.

There are multiple different ways Carolina could start this.

Panthers draft options

Firstly, they could get Darnold some protection and draft an offensive lineman such as Penei Sewell, if he falls to number eight, or Rashawn Slater.

Another option they have is drafting receivers. For this they could go with Devonta Smith or Jaylen Waddle.


If the Panthers are looking later on in the draft for offence, they could take wide receiver Josh Imatorbhebhe, offensive lineman Brenden Jaimes or tight end Tre’ McKitty.

On the defensive side of the ball, the main player around the number eight spot in linebacker Micah Parsons.

Apart from Parson,s the Panthers will have to look a bit further in the draft to find defensive players.

They could look at edge rusher Joseph Ossai or Hamilcar Rashed Jr, also an edge rusher.

For the next few drafts, it now looks like the Carolina Panthers will be looking to put pieces around their new quarterback Sam Darnold to build for the future.

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