4 needs the Carolina Panthers must fill during the 2023 NFL Draft

(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports) Scott Fitterer
(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports) Scott Fitterer /
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Carolina Panthers
(Michael Caterina/Notre Dame Insider via IMAGN Content Services) Michael Mayer /

Carolina Panthers must draft a TE

Remember when Ian Thomas was supposed to be the next great Carolina Panthers tight end? Or when Tommy Tremble was projected to be a big-time playmaker for the offense in 2022?

Unfortunately, none of those things ended up occurring. Thomas has been largely unproductive and inconsistent despite receiving a three-year extension this past offseason while Tremble hasn’t exactly shown much on his rookie deal so far.

It would be risky to go into the 2023 season with these two as your top two players at the position. Competitions and fresh faces are needed. This is why the Panthers must draft a tight end during the upcoming cycle.

The franchise has been looking for consistency at the tight end spot since Greg Olsen left town. Thankfully, this year’s draft class offers an intriguing group of players that could be future starters at the next level.

First, there is Notre Dame’s Michael Mayer. He’s arguably the best tight end in the draft thanks to his great ball skills, run-after-catch ability, and blocking prowess as an in-line player.

There is also Georgia’s Darnell Washington. A 6-foot-7, 265+ pound monster who is probably the best blocking tight end and freak of nature in the 2023 NFL Draft.

After those two, the second and third rounds of the draft will offer high-upside players such as Utah’s Dalton Kincaid, Oregon State’s Luke Musgrave, South Dakota State’s Tucker Kraft, and Alabama’s Cameron Latu.

Fitterer has tight-end options in free agency and the draft. It’s not a bad offseason to acquire one in either scenario.