7 instant problem-solvers the Carolina Panthers could draft in 2024

Which 2024 NFL Draft prospects could the Carolina Panthers identify as immediate problem-solvers under the new regime of Dan Morgan and Dave Canales?
Edgerrin Cooper
Edgerrin Cooper / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
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Carolina Panthers could draft Jer'Zhan Newton

  • Defensive Line | Illinois Fighting Illi

Signing A'Shawn Robinson in free agency will be a significant asset to the Carolina Panthers defensive front. He's a huge force against the run and a difficult asset to move off the block once early leverage is generated. Slotting him next to Derrick Brown within Ejiro Evero's dynamic 3-4 base scheme comes with untold benefits attached.

Looking at the options available, the Panthers aren't blessed with interior rushers capable of generating consistent pressure. Couple this with the concerning edge depth, and this represents a complication unless the situation is addressed during the 2024 NFL Draft.

Jer'Zhan Newton would solve this in an instant. The Illinois prospect specializes in wreaking havoc on opposing quarterbacks with eye-popping speed and ferocity. He's a borderline first-rounder according to most projections, so it'll be a waiting game for the Panthers if they decide to stand pat rather than trade up.

Newton is rarely second getting to the contact point. His initial burst and relentless motor defy a man his size. This is matched by explosive closing speed to reach his destination before the quarterback or ball carrier can counteract.

If the Panthers went in this direction, Newton would be an instant upgrade as a 3-4 defensive end over Shy Tuttle. With Robinson at the nose tackle spot and Brown on the opposite edge, it has the makings of a highly productive trio.

Carolina Panthers could draft Ladd McConkey

  • Wide Receiver | Georgia Bulldogs

It's no secret that Bryce Young needs more helping the passing game. The Carolina Panthers fortified his protection after spending big to land Robert Hunt and Damien Lewis in free agency. Trading for wide receiver Diontae Johnson should also help, but it's not enough given how many pass-catchers underachieved in 2023.

One thing Young needs above all else is players who can get open and are not scheme-dependent. Adam Thielen and Johnson tick the boxes in that regard, although the former isn't getting any younger despite going over 1,000 receiving yards last time around.

If Ladd McConkey makes it out of the first round, the Panthers could do far worse than look in his direction. The Georgia prospect is one of the slickest route-runners in this year's class. He's sharp out of his cuts and knows how to manipulate opposing cornerbacks to his advantage. This is matched by outstanding speed and elusiveness with the football in his hands.

McConkey might not be the physically imposing wideout most fans are craving, but his reliability and potential to be deployed anywhere along the line of scrimmage make him a legitimate candidate for Carolina early on Day 2. Something that would likely bring the biggest smile imaginable to Young's face.