Carolina Panthers draft stud left tackle in latest PFF mock

(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) Penei Sewell
(Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) Penei Sewell /

It’s going to be another fascinating 2021 Carolina Panthers draft, which might include Penei Sewell at No. 8 overall according to Pro Football Focus.

Just how the 2021 Carolina Panthers draft plays out could center around their obvious need for a quarterback upgrade considering how much Teddy Bridgewater struggled in 2020. However, the stars might be aligning against the organization in pursuit of landing a signal-caller that can change the fortunes of the franchise.

Ever since the San Francisco 49ers traded up to No. 3 there has been growing skepticism regarding whether or not the top-four quarterbacks will be off the board by the time Carolina is on the clock at No. 8. The likelihood of another team looking to do a deal with the Atlanta Falcons is high, which would leave the Panthers on the outside looking in unless they decide to pull the trigger on Alabama’s Mac Jones.

This is something that probably won’t happen, according to Joe Person of The Athletic. The reporter stated that although Carolina likes Jones, they don’t consider him as a top-10 pick and will probably look at strengthening other areas if they cannot get their hands on Trey Lance or Justin Fields.

There should be plenty of talent on offer if all four quarterbacks are taken within the opening four selections. The Cincinnati Bengals will have the first shot at the best non-signal-caller available, and what they do at the spot could have significant ramifications where Carolina is concerned.

Carolina Panthers draft Penei Sewell in PFF’s latest mock.

Ben Linsley of Pro Football Focus published his latest mock draft on Monday, which had the Denver Broncos moving into the fourth position for Trey Lance and the Bengals opting to reunite quarterback Joe Burrow with former LSU teammate Ja’Marr Chase at No. 5.

This saw Florida’s exceptional tight end Kyle Pitts going to the Miami Dolphins at No. 6, with the Detroit Lions offsetting the loss of Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones with the addition of Heisman Trophy winner DeVonta Smith at seven.

As for the Panthers, Linsley projects them taking stud left tackle Penei Sewell at No. 8, which would be nothing short of a dream come true and could finally give them a solid blindside presence they’ve been lacking ever since Jordan Gross retired.

"“I don’t see them passing on a slipping Sewell here at eight with the top four quarterbacks off the board. This is an offensive line that still clearly has holes following a first wave in free agency in which the Panthers added only Cam Erving and Pat Elflein. Sewell provides a better option at left tackle than Erving or Greg Little for whoever is behind center in Carolina next season.”"

If the Panthers cannot land a quarterback, this is as good as it gets. Sewell is the best tackle prospect to enter the league in a generation and his eye-catching pro day did absolutely nothing to dispel this notion.

Putting the Oregon standout opposite stud right tackle Taylor Moton would give Carolina bookend protection that would undoubtedly be the best in franchise history.

There is a high probability the Bengals decide to go with Sewell over Chase. But this is a deep class for offensive linemen and the prospect of drafting someone with exceptional production and previous success with their face of the franchise would be hard to pass up.

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Going into 2021 with Bridgewater under center isn’t what the Panthers hoped for. Dreams of Deshaun Watson will have to wait and drafting one in the first round seems to be going against them. However, if they could snag Sewell, it would be the best consolation prize imaginable.