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 /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) Osa Odighizuwa /

Carolina Panthers trade out of No. 151

There is expected to be plenty of trade activity in the mid-to-late rounds as teams either look to find their guy or wave the white flag and try to generate picks for next year when a more stable evaluation process might be in the offing.

This might represent an opportunity for the Carolina Panthers to get themselves an extra pick that might prove useful considering Scott Fitterer’s reputation for finding diamonds in the rough. And there is no harm bumping back seven places at this stage in the grand scheme of things.

Round No. 5 (Pick No. 158)

Osa Odighizuwa – DT (UCLA)

The Panthers made a shrewd pickup in the form of DaQuan Jones in free agency, who should end up being the starter alongside Derrick Brown on the interior next season. However, they could also use a development project to put alongside the former Auburn standout long-term.

Osa Odighizuwa is not physically imposing compared to most defensive tackles entering the league, but he has sufficient athleticism to forge a successful career at the next level. He is stout against the run and can get after the quarterback when the opportunity arises, so even though expecting miracles early on wouldn’t be wise, slotting the prospect behind Brown and Jones would do his transition the world of good.

Odighizuwa could be a solid rotational piece while other areas of his game get up to speed. But he is a high-value pick at this juncture.