Carolina Panthers 2021 NFL Draft: 7 round non-QB mock draft

(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) Penei Sewell
(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) Penei Sewell /
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Carolina Panthers
(Syndication: Tallahassee) Amari Gainer /

Amari Gainer – LB (Florida State)

Where the Carolina Panthers draft a linebacker next year will be largely dependent on how Jermaine Carter performs over the next two games. The former fifth-round pick has been a revelation at the second level after the coaching staff finally put Tahir Whitehead out of his misery and sent him to the bench, so they might have a replacement for Luke Kuechly staring them in the face.

Regardless of whether Carter assumes the starting role long-term or not, Carolina still needs a young development project and Amari Gainer fits the bill. He has been used in a variety of different ways by the Seminoles this season and although he’ll need to bulk up once the prospect gets to the NFL, there is a lot to like about his skill set.

Marco Wilson – CB (Florida)

Much like the linebacker position, cornerback might become more of a pressing need than the later rounds if Corn Elder and Rasul Douglas aren’t brought back. Both have shown tremendous promise at times this season, but consistency has been an issue and their status beyond this season is still very much up in the air.

Marco Wilson has lined up in the slot and the outside for the Gators with equal success. His length and ability to go down the field is sure to be an asset to an NFL team and providing he figures out a better way to be effective in press coverage, he could be a real steal.

Amari Rodgers – WR (Clemson)

Although it might not look like it, the Panthers could potentially have some depth problems at the wide receiver spot next season.  Curtis Samuel, Pharoh Cooper, Keith Kirkwood, and Brandon Zylstra are all out of contract and if Carolina loses them, it will leave the passing attack with D.J. Moore, Robby Anderson, and undrafted free-agent Omar Bayless.

Amari Rodgers has been one of the main beneficiaries of playing with consensus No. 1 overall selection Trevor Lawrence at Clemson and could surge through the 1,000-yard receiving mark with a strong showing in the college football playoffs. He is a polished route-runner and a prominent threat in the red zone, which should ensure he hears his name called next spring.