3 worst-case Carolina Panthers scenarios during the 2023 NFL Draft

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Carolina Panthers
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Carolina Panthers don't find a capable edge rusher

Acquiring an edge rusher to put opposite Brian Burns is a big-time position in need of an upgrade. Much will depend on what defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero plans to do with Frankie Luvu, but it would be a huge shock if the Carolina Panthers didn't set their sights on another body at some stage during the 2023 NFL Draft. 

Much like the situation at cornerback, this looks like a top-heavy class of pass-rushers headlined by the outstanding Will Anderson Jr. If the Panthers want someone with the athletic upside to potentially play a significant role right out of the gate, it must come from the first three rounds.

There is a consensus drop-off after that. Something that could cause panic among other teams, who might reach for a prospect of interest if there's a run on the position at any stage. 

Scott Fitterer has a reputation for playing the board well. His masterful draft management in 2021 set the tone for what came after, so the Panthers have a high-level front-office figure capable of reacting to almost any situation. 

The level of urgency isn't what it once was considering the switch to a 3-4 base defense, the money available to sign a free agent should they wish, and the fact Carolina already has their choice of quarterbacks from atop the draft. Still, not adding a pass-rusher does represent a worst-case scenario all things considered.