10 draft options for the Panthers at No. 8 after Sam Darnold trade

(Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images) Sam Darnold
(Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images) Sam Darnold /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Corey Perrine/Getty Images) Rashawn Slater /

Rashawn Slater – OT (Northwestern)

It is highly unlikely Penei Sewell makes it down to the Carolina Panthers at No. 8 considering his exceptional talent, although there are more than a few mock drafts going around that see this as a possibility. However, if the Oregon man is off the board then Rashawn Slater isn’t a bad consolation prize by any stretch of the imagination.

The Northwestern edge protector is powerful and physical in equal measure. Slater boasts eye-catching footwork and is adept either in pass protection or creating lanes on the edge on running downs.

There was no point in trading for Sam Darnold if the Panthers don’t get better in the way of protection around him. So a prospect like Slater makes a ton of sense.

Jaylen Waddle – WR (Alabama)

The Panthers lost Curtis Samuel to the Washington Football Team in free agency, so even though they did bring in David Moore to potentially fill the void, looking in the direction of Jaylen Waddle could be a surprising thing to consider.

Simply put, Waddle can do it all. He makes an impact on the outside, in the slot, over short and deep routes, can take carries out of the backfield, and also make a real difference on special teams in the return game.

This sort of versatility is something Matt Rhule loves in his college recruits. Although there is a high likelihood someone snaps him up before No. 8, a discussion needs to be had in this eventuality.

Caleb Farley – CB (Virginia Tech)

There are few prospects entering the league this year with more upside than Caleb Farley. There are a couple of red flags where injuries are concerned. But considering how smooth his transition was to the cornerback position after playing at wide receiver and quarterback earlier in his career, the potential for further development is there for all to see.

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Carolina would need to be sure Farley isn’t going to suffer any further complications from a health perspective before taking him so high. However, judging by what we’ve seen from him on the field of late, there is a big chance he eventually becomes the best cornerback in this class.