If it wasn’t obvious before they traded up, the Carolina Panthers are targeting a quarterback in the 2023 NFL Draft with their first overall pick. I love what the Panthers have done thus far in the 2023 offseason.
Trading up to get your guy and still managing to add quality pieces to the offense was brilliant by GM Scott Fitterer and new head coach Frank Reich.
They did lose DJ Moore when they made the big trade up to the number one overall pick, but they still managed to add Adam Thielen, DJ Chark, Miles Sanders, and Hayden Hurts to an already quality offensive line.
Couple that with their QB selection, likely to be Bryce Young or CJ Stroud, and the offensive coaching staff that Reich has built, and I think we can easily see this team winning more than losing in 2023.
Carolina Panthers Mock Draft: Establishing a plan for the future
1st overall: CJ Stroud, QB, Ohio State
I honestly think concerns about Bryce Young’s frame can knock him down a pick in 2023. CJ Stroud might be the most complete QB in the class when you consider, frame, arm talent, accuracy, and any other positive QB trait.
Young might be the more talented thrower of the football, but Stroud, I think, is all around a better prospect and worth the first overall pick.
39th overall: Zay Flowers, WR, Boston College
The Panthers need to rebuild their wide receiver room a bit with the departure of DJ Moore to the Chicago Bears. Adam Thielen is a nice piece but is in his 30s, and the Panthers do have Terrace Marshall Jr, Laviska Shenault, and a 26 year old DJ Chark, so adding someone like Flowers could give this unit a nice core.
93rd overall: DJ Johnson, EDGE, Oregon
While the offense and the quarterback situation needs first priority in 2023, the Panthers could still benefit in adding to what could be a top 10 defense in 2023. Eijro Evero is coming over from the Denver Broncos where he coordinated one of the top units in football in 2022.
Adding an edge rusher in the middle rounds is a savvy move by Scott Fitterer.
114th overall: Daiyan Henley, LB, Washington State
132nd overall: Wayna Morris, OT, Oklahoma
145th overall: Kenny McIntosh, RB, Georgia
The Carolina Panthers do not have a ton of draft picks in 2023, but they do have enough talent on their roster and what appears to be strong coaching to have a quick turnaround in 2023.
I’d pencil in the Panthers as being the NFC South favorites this coming season.