Carolina Panthers 7-round 2021 mock draft brings playoff potential

(Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images) Richie Grant
(Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images) Richie Grant /
3 of 7
Carolina Panthers
(Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports) Wyatt Davis /

Round No. 2 (No. 37 overall)

Wyatt Davis – OG (Ohio State)

Keeping Sam Darnold upright is going to be of critical importance for the Carolina Panthers in pursuit of further progression next season. Although the quarterback still has a ton of upside, if he spends the 2021 campaign running for his life and making bad decisions as a result, the trade will be seen as a failure and one that was not all down to the former USC star.

Taking an offensive tackle in Round No. 1 does not mean the Panthers won’t address their protection in the second. Wyatt Davis is arguably the best out-and-out guard in this year’s class and represents a plug-and-play interior option that would be an instant upgrade on anything Carolina currently has at its disposal.

Davis will be a hot commodity early on Day 2, so the Panthers snap him up at the earliest possible opportunity.

Round No. 2 (No. 39 overall)

Richie Grant – S (UCF)

Matt Rhule had nothing but praise for Richie Grant after spending the week coaching him at the 2021 Senior Bowl. As luck would have it, this is also a big-time fit for the Panthers, who need a long-term partner for stud rookie Jeremy Chinn on the backend moving forward.

Grant has a lot of likable traits to call upon. He is a born winner that has a real intelligence to be around the football consistently, with his willingness to come down and assist in run support another potential impact that shouldn’t be overlooked.

Adding someone like Grant gets them a lot better at a position of need after Carolina decided to release Tre Boston ahead of time after going through some real struggles in 2020.