Carolina Panthers: Breaking down their top 3 2020 NFL Draft needs

(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) Derrick Brown
(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) Derrick Brown /
1 of 3
Carolina Panthers, Derrick Brown
Carolina Panthers, Derrick Brown. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /

The Carolina Panthers head into the 2020 NFL Draft with their sights set on upgrading several areas of weakness on the roster. It’s all about the defense this year.

At this point in time, free agency, for the most part, is in the books for the Carolina Panthers. They’ve addressed several issues on the offensive side of the ball that should hopefully help them improve in that area this upcoming season.

On paper, they’ve added better talent at wide receiver, offensive line, and at quarterback. Some household names have either been retired or cut and well, the Panthers have officially entered a full-on rebuild with hopes of a brighter future. There is still a lot of work left to do and even more tough decisions ahead as it all starts with the 2020 NFL Draft.

The Panthers have a few areas on the defensive side of the ball that are in dire need of better talent. The Panthers’ defense lacks an overall pass rush, the ability to consistently stop the run, and an identity that they mean business. This year’s draft couldn’t have come at a better time as the Panthers are in a good position to hopefully address these issues and then some.

As of right now, the Panthers have the No. 7 overall pick in the first round and then more than enough picks after that to truly have a strong draft class this year. If general manager Marty Hurney can work some magic here, the Panthers will have much to be excited for over the next few years. Let’s breakdown their top three draft needs as it’s critical for these to be priorities to begin the building blocks for better seasons ahead. It’s all about bolstering their defense to rebuild the right way for years to come.

Carolina Panthers, Troy Dye #35
Carolina Panthers, Troy Dye #35. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /

3). Adding quality depth at linebacker

In the grand scheme of things, the Panthers would be wise to add the best available linebacker when they’re on the clock in Rounds 4-5. Depth is super important at the linebacker position as it would be great to see the Panthers land a player that is a human tackling machine.

The kind of linebacker that might not be able to start immediately but could be developed nicely within his first two years in the pros. Ideally, the Panthers need to start getting younger and faster on defense as it would be a great sight to see them get a speedy linebacker that can come right in and provide quality depth.

The Panthers recently signed linebacker Tahir Whitehead to help ease the blow of losing Luke Kuechly to retirement. Of course, Whitehead won’t replace Kuechly completely or anything but he’s a nice one-year replacement that should be able to produce if healthy.

Hopefully, the Panthers use a mid-round draft pick on a linebacker that is ready to be groomed into the complete package. It’s doubtful they’ll find an instant starter during Rounds 4-5 but should be able to find someone moldable with high potential.