Carolina Panthers: 3 Clemson stars taken in 2021 mock draft sim

(Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) Trevor Lawrence
(Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) Trevor Lawrence /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) Pete Werner /

PETEWERNER. 195. player. 87. Pick Analysis. LB. OHIO STATE. Scouting Report

Carolina Panthers Draft: Pete Werner (LB) – Ohio State (No. 195)

The Carolina Panthers might decide to draft a linebacker much higher than this if their current group fails to produce in 2020. Losing Luke Kuechly to a shock retirement was always going to come with a period of transition. And it remains to be seen whether Tahir Whitehead can do enough to get a longer-term commitment from the organization.

If they decide to wait until the later rounds and focus their attention elsewhere, then Pete Werner is a player they should be monitoring closely. The Ohio State standout might have some limitations. But there is a lot to like about his motor and ability to lead from the second level.

Werner is an imposing figure that commands respect in run support. His natural instincts are matched by a physicality in his tackles that gets opponents to the ground at the first attempt more often than not.

This also enables him to make his presence felt on the line of scrimmage. And Werner is also aware enough to get involved in coverage over intermediate routes.

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The Buckeye appears more like a two-down linebacker at this juncture. This is down to his relative lack of fluidity. Covering tight ends is something he struggled with in passing situations. And Werner’s draft stock would be hurt if he cannot prove capable of filling more of a three-down role in 2020 if there is a college season at all.