Panthers 7-round 2023 NFL mock draft: Making moves in Round 1

(Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports) Isaiah Foskey
(Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports) Isaiah Foskey /
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Carolina Panthers
(Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports) Isaiah Foskey /

Carolina Panthers select Isaiah Foskey

  • Defensive End | Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Outside of quarterback, finding a No. 2 pass rusher opposite of Brian Burns is a priority for the Carolina Panthers this offseason. After choosing to let Hasson Reddick walk in free agency, those in power made an unsuccessful gamble with their current group of edge rushers.

While Burns became a franchise player, others tasked with manning the other defensive end position could not match Reddick’s production whatsoever. In this mock draft scenario, the Panthers take another gamble that doesn’t cost them much in terms of capital.

By trading up with the Kansas City Chiefs, general manager Scott Fitterer lands one of the top pass-rushing prospects in the 2023 NFL Draft, Notre Dame’s Isaiah Foskey. The former four-star high school recruit offers a ton outside of the film room as he was a consensus All-American and became the Fighting Irish’s all-time sack leader.

Foskey is also a great athlete who can win with speed and speed-to-power. There are a lot of flashes on film as a pass rusher and run defender, providing sufficient pad level and explosive strength to allow himself to be an all-around defender at the line of scrimmage.

While he still has plenty of room for growth, the flashes on film make Foskey worth the risk to trade back into the first round.