4 sneaky threats the Panthers should watch out for vs. the Lions

(Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports) Quintez Cephus
(Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports) Quintez Cephus /
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Carolina Panthers
(Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports) Jeff Okudah /

Jeff Okudah – CB

Jeff Okudah hasn’t lived up to the No. 3 overall selection just yet. But the Carolina Panthers should ignore him at their peril.

The former Ohio State standout came into the NFL with the potential to be the next great shutdown cornerback. It’s been a baptism of fire for Okudah through the Lions’ first nine games, but even the most elite players at the position do tend to go through their fair share of struggles during their initial transition to the pro ranks.

Okudah is managing to make a difference despite his struggles from a coverage perspective. His outstanding tackling ability has really caught the eye on running downs and he’s not shied away from coming up against some of the NFL’s best at times during the campaign.

Detroit has a special player on their hands once Okludah gets over his early jitters. This season will be invaluable for his experience moving forward and he is sure to get a stern test of his credentials against the Carolina Panthers and their sensational wideout trio of Robby Anderson, D.J. Moore, and Curtis Samuel.

Whether Will Grier or P.J. Walker will be able to be effective enough in their distribution to make the most out of these weapons is up for debate. Okudah is bound to have a statement game at some point and hopefully, it won’t be at Bank of America Stadium.