Carolina Panthers draft: Is Patrick Surtain too good to pass up?

(Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) Patrick Surtain
(Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) Patrick Surtain /
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Carolina Panthers
(Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) Patrick Surtain /

Could cornerback Patrick Surtain be too good to turn down for the Carolina Panthers at No. 8 overall in the 2021 NFL Draft?

The big talking point for the Carolina Panthers over the next few weeks will be just what they are going to do at No. 8 overall in the 2021 NFL Draft. There is plenty of speculation and projections of a bold move up the order to get a franchise quarterback of the future. But plenty of other exciting prospects are catching the eye if the organization decides to go with Teddy Bridgewater for one more season.

This wouldn’t be the most popular decision in the world by any stretch of the imagination. The Panthers have made their intentions clear about getting an upgrade this offseason, which has resulted in a failed bid for Matthew Stafford from the Detroit Lions and almost constant speculation linking Carolina with a landmark trade for Deshaun Watson from the Houston Texans.

Considering the current civil suits surrounding Watson that seem to be growing with every passing day, the Panthers would be wise to hold off on this until the situation is resolved. If this also includes not moving up into the top-three picks to secure their signal-caller of choice, then building other areas of the roster would be the smart way to go.

One glaring need currently is at cornerback. The Panthers desperately need a prolific option to put opposite Donte Jackson, who is himself heading into a contract year and may command some big bucks with another strong campaign in 2021.

Patrick Surtain is as good as it gets coming out of college this year. The Alabama prospect has some tremendous upside and his contribution during the Crimson Tide’s 2020 campaign that resulted in a convincing national championship triumph will ensure he is one of the first names called next month.

His stock was solidified and even enhanced at Alabama’s pro day this week, which Matt Rhule and Scott Fitterer did not attend. However, that should not detract from just how special a player Surtain can become as he looks to follow in his father’s footsteps.