Panthers 7-round mock 2021 NFL Draft using best player available

(Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images) Jaylen Waddle
(Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images) Jaylen Waddle /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images) Teven Jenkins /

Round No. 2 (Pick No. 39)

Teven Jenkins – OT (Oklahoma State)

This would be an absolute no-brainer in the second round if Teven Jenkins falls this far. The offensive tackle fills a huge need for the Carolina Panthers and is the best player available at No. 39 in this scenario, so it is a win-win for the organization.

Jenkins could end up being a late first-round pick judging by most projections, although some analysts have him as an early second-rounder. The Oklahoma State standout plays with ruthless aggression that is matched by surprising flexibility for a man his size.

The prospect also has experience playing at tackle or on the interior, which is the sort of versatility Carolina clearly loves in their new recruits.

Round No. 3 (Pick No. 73)

Tay Gowan – CB (Central Florida)

Whether Tay Gowan is going to make it this far down the pecking order remains to be seen. There could be three Central Florida secondary members go in the first two days of the draft, which shows how far the program has come in such a short space of time.

Gowan thrives in press coverage, which is somewhere the Panthers struggled last season in the absence of Donte Jackson. While he doesn’t boast what one would call exceptional athleticism, his reactions and football IQ are good enough to make a real difference at the next level.

The Panthers signing A.J. Bouye also takes some of the heat of an incoming college player, which is something that would undoubtedly work in Gowan’s favor during his initial adjustment to the NFL.