5 bold training camp predictions for the Carolina Panthers in 2021

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold and Matt Rhule
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold and Matt Rhule /
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Carolina Panthers
(Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports) Terrace Marshall Jr. /

Carolina Panthers will make Terrace Marshall Jr. WR2 (outside option)

The Carolina Panthers were extremely careful with Terrace Marshall Jr. during rookie minicamp, OTAs, and the mandatory minicamp that followed. He is building himself up from a recent injury problem and the best solution was to wrap the wide receiver up in cotton wool to ensure he’s ready to go during training camp.

Marshall was an opportunity the Panthers simply couldn’t pass up at No. 59 overall. They had more pressing needs elsewhere, but when a top talent fell into their laps, a change in direction was a smart move.

Carolina lost the services of Curtis Samuel when he left for the Washington Football Team in free agency. David Moore is projected to fill the third spot behind D.J. Moore and Robby Anderson prior to camp after signing from the Seattle Seahawks. But there are some high hopes Marshall can surge above him on the depth chart.

This doesn’t happen without a smooth transition to the set-up in the coming weeks. Marshall has been on the fringes somewhat due to injury so far, which means he’ll be playing catch-up to a certain extent when the LSU product takes to the gridiron.

Some are expecting Marshall to take this spot automatically. But things don’t happen that way in the NFL and the rookie needs to fight hard in pursuit of earning notable reps right from the outset.

There is even the possibility of using Marshall on the outside given his size and potential to create mismatches. Anderson’s ability to get open quickly makes him an intriguing slot option in this eventuality.