Sam Darnold gets major boost as Panthers pick Terrace Marshall Jr.

(Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports) Terrace Marshall Jr.
(Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports) Terrace Marshall Jr. /

Quarterback Sam Darnold got a major boost after the Carolina Panthers selected Terrace Marshall Jr. at No.  overall in the 2021 NFL Draft.

After selecting cornerback Jaycee Horn with the No. 8 overall selection in the 2021 NFL Draft, there was plenty of intrigue surrounding just what the Carolina Panthers were going to do on Day 2. General manager Scott Fitterer was keen to go into the process with the intention of selecting the best player available, but there were some obvious needs that needed to be addressed over Rounds 2 and 3.

One of these was not wide receiver. But that didn’t stop the Panthers from selecting Terrace Marshall Jr. at No. 79 overall.

This came as a result of a trade with the Chicago Bears that saw Carolina acquire No. 52, 83, and 204 in exchange for No. 39 and 151.

Unbelievably, the Panthers also moved back from No. 52 after a deal with the Cleveland Browns that gave them another third-round pick, but they now have no fourth or fifth-rounders.

Marshall Jr. has the potential to be a Day 1 starter with a smooth transition to the professional ranks. The former LSU standout was a supreme performer in college and enters the NFL with more upside than most prospects at the position. So this could be yet another shrewd move from the front office if it brings instant rewards.

Getting things right in the first two rounds is something Carolina has enjoyed a tremendous amount of success with over recent years. But what comes after this has been less impressive and hopefully, Fitterer’s reputation for finding late-round diamonds in the rough during his time with the Seattle Seahawks can serve him well now he’s calling the shots elsewhere.

As for (). his arrival to the franchise promises to benefit quarterback Sam Darnold more than most, who got a massive vote of confidence from the Panthers after they passed on Justin Fields.

What can the Carolina Panthers expect from Terrace Marshall Jr.

Marshall Jr. is a physically imposing individual that performed consistently well against some top college opposition throughout his career. He seems to fit the mold of what Rhule is trying to build across the organization and the Panthers will be expecting the prospect to come in and make his presence felt from the word go.

Simply put, that is a challenge Marshall Jr. is sure to relish during a reunion with Joe Brady in the NFL.

There were some who thought he might even end up being a first-round pick after seeing his stock surge during the evaluation process. But as was the case with Yetur Gross-Matos in 2020, others’ loss is Carolina’s gain.

This has been an encouraging start to the draft and the Panthers still have six more selections to further bolster their roster ahead of OTAs and training camp after Teddy Bridgewater’s trade to the Denver Broncos was finalized.

Next. Did Matt Rhule just bet his job on Carolina Panthers QB Sam Darnold?. dark

What comes next will be equally as important, But they can be safe in the knowledge Marshall Jr. comes into the league with a significant amount going for him.