4 second-year Panthers players under pressure following 2022 draft

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Shi Smith
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Shi Smith /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Brady Christensen /

3. player. 87. . OL. Carolina Panthers. BRADY CHRISTENSEN

Brady Christensen – Carolina Panthers OL

One cannot help but feel sorry for Brady Christensen. This was one of college football’s most consistent offensive tackles before entering the draft and the Carolina Panthers’ infatuation with his lack of arm length had an adverse effect on the BYU product’s overall development in 2021.

Christensen was used almost everywhere but the blindside until later on in the season when the Panthers had no other viable options. However, any hopes the former third-round pick had of securing the spot long-term were dealt a hammer blow when Carolina selected Ikem Ekwonu – the top player on their draft board – at No. 6 overall.

This represents a challenge for Christensen, who is now expected to fight it out for the starting left guard job. Somewhere that he might be able to perform well long-term alongside Ekwonu and recently acquired center Bradley Bozeman.

Obviously, the Panthers will look to keep Christensen as a backup left tackle in the event Ekwonu gets injured at any stage. But it might provide some comfort for the player now that he finally has a potentially permanent position to develop his craft under James Campen.

Christensen’s involvement in the starting rotation is going to be something to watch this offseason. Providing he puts his athleticism to good use, it would be a surprise if the lineman doesn’t make a strong case.