5 new NFC South players the Panthers should worry about in 2021

Dean Jones
(Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports) Giovani Bernard
(Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports) Giovani Bernard /
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Carolina Panthers
(Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports) Kyle Pitts /

Kyle Pitts – TE

There was plenty of talk surrounding the Atlanta Falcons potentially taking a quarterback at No. 4 overall and getting Matt Ryan’s long-term successor. Instead, the team spurned this opportunity and selected a prospect many believe to be the most talented overall player entering the NFL this year.

Kyle Pitts has the loftiest of expectations after starring at Florida in college. The tight end has the scope to revolutionize the position with a smooth transition to the pro ranks and putting him alongside Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley gives Atlanta a three-headed monster that will be incredibly hard to stop if Ryan makes the most out of these exceptional weapons.

Pitts represents a matchup nightmare and one the Carolina Panthers will have a hard time with. He can make a difference from the slot, on the outside, or in the red zone, with his athleticism and ball skills making him almost unplayable at the top of his game.

It wouldn’t be the biggest shock in the world to see Jaycee Horn tasked with stopping Pitts despite the presence of Ridley and Jones on the outside. The South Carolina product got some joy against the tight end during their college encounters and this previous experience will serve him and the Panthers well in their two divisional games next season.

Whether Horn has any joy against Pitts or not remains to be seen. But the player will be a constant thorn in Carolina’s side for years to come.