5 biggest surprises from Carolina Panthers first preseason game

(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports) Phil Hoskins
(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports) Phil Hoskins /
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Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Brady Christensen /

Brady Christensen at Carolina Panthers RT

When the offensive starters trotted onto the field Sunday there was quite the surprise lined up in the position vacated by starter Taylor Moton. Of course, that was rookie Brady Christensen.

Christensen came into draft night as the highest-rated left tackle in college football history and many expected him to go long before the No. 70 overall selection where the Carolina Panthers jumped on the opportunity to bring in the young star.

On a day where the offensive line struggled, especially on the left side, Christensen was a solid presence on the right edge. Much like Moton, the BYU standout held back the opposing lineman with remarkable skill and consistency, only being beaten on a couple of plays and even those didn’t really affect the end result.

Christensen kept defenders in front of him in pass protection and charged into the second level, obliterating the smaller defenders, on run plays. His shorter arms not seeming to be the stumbling block that many evaluators thought they would be.

The big-bodied lineman was even put inside at left guard in the second half and performed rather well at that position as well in every facet of the game.

The only disappointment is that, even after Trent Scott and others struggled on the blindside, Christensen didn’t get the opportunity to prove he could handle his native position at the next level.