4 biggest Carolina Panthers surprises from the 2024 NFL Draft

There were a few shocks along the way.
Dan Morgan
Dan Morgan / Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports
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Despite the consensus amongst fans being positive after the 2024 NFL Draft, some questions remain. The majority of the offseason has been a solid one for the Carolina Panthers. A lot of work is needed to right the wrongs of previous coaches and general managers, but small positive steps are being made.   

The Panthers came away for the offseason showpiece in Detroit with a group of players ready to make an impact from Day 1. There are potential starters at wide receiver, running back, and tight end, with depth at linebacker, cornerback, and defensive line.

Carolina also has an intriguing crop of undrafted free-agent prospects that will be vying for roster spots when the Panthers take to training camp in Charlotte for the first time.  

Despite the overall positivity surrounding the team, fans are understandably remaining cautious. Who can remember just 12 short months ago, a lot of fans were crowning the Panthers the NFC South champions before the campaign began? We all know what followed - nothing short of an unmitigated disaster.   

At the end of the day, this was a 2-15 team last season. Until things change on the field, fans will continue to openly question the majority of the decisions the team makes. But without further ado, let’s break down the four biggest Panthers surprises to emerge from the 2024 NFL Draft.

National reaction to Carolina Panthers' draft class

While fans are right to be cautious about the Carolina Panthers heading into the 2024 season, most believe the 2024 NFL Draft was a positive one. They addressed needs, added valuable depth, and selected the consensus No. 1 running back in the class.   

What also has gone seemingly unnoticed is that Dan Morgan and his team managed to recoup a second pick in 2025. Something which they were lacking following the trade-up for quarterback Bryce Young a year ago.   

Despite all these positives, it seems the national media is less enthused. Many publications rank the team toward the bottom when it comes to draft rankings usually similar to the Atlanta Falcons. We all saw what Carolina's division rival did - the Panthers weren't nearly as bad.

Unfortunately, when you’re a perennial struggler, these things are going to happen. Regardless of the moves, the Panthers are not going to garner the respect of the national media while the football product remains poor.   

It seems slightly strange how we’ve heard all offseason that Dan Morgan needs to surround Young with weapons. But after doing just that, it’s still not enough. For new head coach Dave Canales, shifting narratives starts with winning.