3 NFL Draft decisions the Carolina Panthers might regret in 2024

Could the Carolina Panthers live to regret these draft decisions?
Dan Morgan
Dan Morgan / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
3 of 3

Carolina Panthers traded up for a running back

While running back wasn't the biggest need for the Carolina Panthers heading into the 2024 NFL Draft, those in power examined the top prospects in great detail during their thorough evaluations. As it turned out, they had one in mind relatively early in the process.

After trading down to get a 2025 second-round selection from the Los Angeles Rams, the Panthers quickly surged back up the second-round order to take Jonathon Brooks at No. 46 overall. The former Texas star was widely regarded as the best running back in this year's class - someone who could potentially provide quarterback Bryce Young with a genuine three-down presence to depend upon long term.

Brooks is an outstanding talent, there's no getting away from that. He's a fluid mover with exceptional on-field vision and elusiveness. Although not classed as having elite speed, it's sufficient enough to turn even the smallest seam into an impressive gain. There's also a lot to like about his growth as a route-runner out of the backfield, which should also help Young enormously.

The Panthers had conviction in Brooks and did what was necessary to get their guy. They cannot be criticized for that, but this move does come with an element of risk attached.

While Brooks' gifts add another level of dynamism to an offense that came with almost no explosiveness whatsoever last season, he is coming off a torn ACL. Everything must have checked out medically for the Panthers to feel confident enough to trade up, but any additional injury problems aren't going to reflect well on those in positions of power.

There was also a lot of meat on the bone at this stage of the draft. Wide receivers, edge rushers, tight ends, cornerbacks, and offensive linemen who could help immediately were also available. Instead, Morgan opted to add his second-straight playmaker for Young after selecting wide receiver Xavier Legette at No. 32 overall.

Hopefully, it'll all bear fruit and everything will go off without a hitch. After all, it's about time the Panthers had some good fortune from the football gods.