5 best player options if the Carolina Panthers stay at No. 8

(Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports) Kyle Pitts
(Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports) Kyle Pitts /
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Carolina Panthers
(Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) Patrick Surtain /

Patrick Surtain – CB (Alabama)

The Carolina Panthers have worked on addressing defensive needs during free agency so far. This gives them a loaded front-seven who look capable of a significant improvement in 2021, but they could still use some quality reinforcements in the secondary in pursuit of taking the next step forward in their rebuild.

If the top-four quarterbacks are gone and the Panthers don’t move up to acquire one, then it might be worth them picking up a potential shutdown cornerback to slot opposite Donte Jackson, who is heading into a contract year and looking for a  big payday after a strong end to the 2020 campaign.

Should the Panthers go in this direction, then Patrick Surtain should be high on their list of options. The Alabama standout emerged as a tremendous cover corner during his time with the Crimson Tide and arrives at the next level on the back of a sterling 2020 campaign that played a leading role in their National Championship triumph.

With the recent injury concern emerging with Caleb Farley, there is a big chance Surtain is the first corner off the board next month. There might be some value lower down the pecking order for Carolina, but locking down a potentially elite prospect could make their defense even more of a force next season and beyond is not out of the realm of possibility.