Can Carolina Panthers CB Jaycee Horn become Jalen Ramsey 2.0?

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Jaycee Horn
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Jaycee Horn /

Could Carolina Panthers cornerback Jaycee Horn end being another version of All-Pro Jalen Ramsey with a smooth transition to the pros?

It’s clear that Jaycee Horn holds himself to a high standard. He is supremely talented and extremely focused in equal measure, something that made him a top priority for the Carolina Panthers during the 2021 NFL Draft.

The South Carolina product ticked every box in college. Horn has the size, pedigree, and athleticism to make a significant difference at the next level and although there might be some growing pains as a rookie, there is a lot to like about his chances moving forward.

There is an increasing sense of hype where Horn is concerned.

None other than Pro Football Hall of Famer-turns NFL Network Analyst LaDainian Tomlinson expects the rookie to have a similar impact on the Panthers as Jalen Ramsey’s done on both the Jacksonville Jaguars and Los Angeles Rams during his career.

"“Jaycee Horn, in my opinion, will have a Jalen Ramsey-type of impact on that defense.”"

This is a lofty goal to aim for.

But the intangibles where Horn is concerned are there for all to see.

Ramsey is the best in the business. He is a true shutdown cornerback who can lock down one side of the field no matter which elite wide receiver is up against him on any given down.

Carolina Panthers are expecting big things from Jaycee Horn in 2021 and beyond.

The All-Pro spent time working with Horn during the offseason and liked what he saw. Another massive confidence boost for the first-year-pro and one that could stand him in good stead ahead of some significant challenges in 2021.

When Horn asked him about the transition from college to the pros in the docuseries “Hey Rookie Welcome to the NFL”, Ramsey told the Panthers’ newest first-round pick to treat every receiving threat the same and not be overawed coming up against wideouts he may have looked up to before arriving at the next level.

"“It’s really a mindset that, when you take that next step from college to the NFL, you’ve got all the ability. You’ve got all the talent. You’ve got everything. You ain’t even got to worry about all that. I feel like some people worry about that, like, ‘Man, I’m finna be playing with receivers I looked up to, receivers who I played on Madden.’ Like, yeah, you are. It’s cool, whatever. It’s dope. But you there for a reason. You solid, though. You know what it is.”"

The sky is the limit for Horn.

He’ll be given plenty of responsibility early in his career by the Panthers, who are hoping for much-improved production from their cornerback unit with Donte Jackson and free-agent signing A.J. Bouye also set to assist their cause.

Horn will have a bullseye on his back. This is normally associated with top-end pick and there appears little doubt that opposing teams will target him heavily to see if he can withstand the pressure.

Being around the NFL for most of his life, Horn should be better prepared than most. He is the son of a former Pro Bowl wide receiver, after all.

Putting it all together is the primary objective for Horn, who made a notable impression during the early portion of Carolina’s offseason program.

What comes next when the pads go on will be equally as important. Going up against the likes of D.J. Moore and Robby Anderson at training camp is going to be the biggest indicator yet as to what we can expect from the player right out of the gate.

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Horn and Ramsey have the same sort of physical attributes. If he can get even close to his level of production somewhere down the line, the Panthers have struck gold.