Panthers’ fans should stop dreaming about Trevor Lawrence

(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images) Trevor Lawrence
(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images) Trevor Lawrence /

It is time for sections of the Carolina Panthers’ loyal fanbase to stop dreaming about getting Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence next spring.

There is plenty of hype surrounding Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence. He is projected to be the No. 1 overall pick in 2021 providing the player does not suffer a significant drop-off in production this season. And he comes with franchise-changing ability at the next level.

The Carolina Panthers have been given some of the best odds to land Lawrence next spring. Expectations are relatively low during the first year of their rebuild under Matt Rhule. But whether this is going to come with a disastrous campaign that ends with the first pick in the draft is up for debate.

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Things might not be as bad as first feared if everything clicks into place right away in Carolina. Their offense has the potential to be electrifying and put some substantial points on the board. And if the defensive side of the ball can hold up to its end of the bargain, then it might come with a surprising record that defies their preseason predictions.

Lawrence would be the biggest of consolation prizes if the season turned sour. The signal-caller has looked NFL ready from his first year under center for the Tigers and he has a proven track record of getting it done in big-time situations.

He will also get the chance to showcase what adjustments were made this offseason for Clemson in 2020. The program will be part of a college football season that has a completely different look to it. If Lawrence shows even more promise in the coming months it is going to propel him past the likes of Justin Fields, Penei Sewell, and Ja’Marr Chase for the No. 1 pick distinction.

The Panthers’ over-under on victories in 2020 is currently at 5.5. This seems like an attainable goal for this talented young group. But there is just no telling how they are going to come together until we see them out on the field in a competitive setting.

One team that might be better placed to get someone like Lawrence is the Jacksonville Jaguars. They appear in full rebuilding mode after trading away stud defensive end Yannick Ngakoue to the Minnesota Vikings and waiving star running back Leonard Fournette.

It is hard for any team to “tank” in the NFL. The Miami Dolphins were accused of this in 2019 only to finish with the fifth-worst record, and they still managed to get their signal-caller of choice in Tua Tagovailoa.

Anyone that wants Lawrence next year is not going to be so lucky. He is at worst a top-three selection going into the new season and he could wind up being the consensus No. 1 overall pick we saw in Joe Burrow earlier this year.

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The Panthers might go through their fair share of struggles. But it would be a massive shock if they had the NFL’s worst record. It’s time for Carolina’s loyal fanbase to stop dreaming about seeing Lawrence turn out for the organization, no matter how badly they want it to happen.