Panthers 2021 Draft: Franchise QB secured in latest 7-round mock

(Photo by Chris Gardner/Getty Images) Zach Wilson
(Photo by Chris Gardner/Getty Images) Zach Wilson /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Teddy Bridgewater /

Will the Carolina Panthers select a quarterback in the 2021 NFL Draft?

The Carolina Panthers are under increasing pressure to take a quarterback of the future in the 2021 NFL Draft. Teddy Bridgewater‘s play just hasn’t done enough to convince people that he is the man to lead the team moving forward, although the franchise appears stuck with the signal-caller until 2022 due to the three-year deal he signed last year.

It would be a huge statement of intent for the Panthers if they went in this particular direction. The chances of Trevor Lawrence or Justin Fields being around by the time Carolina selects at No. 8 overall appears bleak, leaving the decision-makers looking at other alternatives if they come to the conclusion that Bridgewater will be surplus to requirements sooner rather than later.

There is also the incoming general manager to consider. Carolina fired Marty Hurney shortly before their season came to a conclusion and this fresh set of ideas with a more analytical approach is another notable element to this that shouldn’t be overlooked.

We took a look at which way the Panthers would go by using The Draft Network’s mock draft machine, which saw one of the hottest commodities coming out of college this year fall into their laps.

Pick No. 1

Carolina Panthers
(Rick Bowmer/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports) Zach Wilson /

Zach Wilson – QB (BYU)

There aren’t many prospects drawing more attention coming into the NFL this year than Zach Wilson. The BYU quarterback enjoyed a phenomenal 2020 season that has resulted in a surge up draft boards as a result. So with a solid evaluation process, he could end up being a top-five selection when it’s all said and done.

Wilson has all the tools needed to forge a successful career at the next level. His ability to conjure up plays out of nothing and move the football effortlessly down the field is something that really sets the prospect apart and this exciting method of play is something the Panthers haven’t seen at any stage from Bridgewater.

Much will depend on whether Wilson drops this far. The Falcons or Lions might decide to take him before the Panthers get the chance given where Matthew Stafford and Matt Ryan are in their respective careers.