Carolina Panthers 2023 NFL re-draft at the bye week: Does Bryce Young go No. 1?

What would the Carolina Panthers do differently in hindsight?
Bryce Young
Bryce Young / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
4 of 6

Round No. 3 (Pick No. 80)

Carolina Panthers draft De'Von Achane

  • Running Back | Texas A&M Aggies
  • Previous pick: D.J. Johnson (OLB)

When the Carolina Panthers traded up to select edge rusher D.J. Johnson at No. 80 overall, it was met with bemusement from analysts and fans alike. This was a six-year college player with one season of experience on the defensive side of things, with most assessing his hopes projecting a late Day 3 pick at best once examining his credentials.

Johnson was lauded by the Panthers as a long-term investment despite being older than most emerging from college to the next level. He's been virtually anonymous through six games - a healthy scratch numerous times - and the video that went viral seeing him get thrown about by an undrafted free agent on the practice squad did nothing to raise confidence.

If the Panthers could do it all again, they probably would. Looking at the phenomenal start De'Von Achane's made to his NFL career, this is our third-round pick over Johnson.

Achane is benefitting from Mike McDaniel's offensive scheme and the Miami Dolphins having some other dynamic weapons. His vision and explosiveness are traits the Panthers haven't benefitted from since Christian McCaffrey was traded to the San Francisco 49ers, although the former Texas A&M stud is currently on injured/reserve.

The Panthers opted to move forward with Miles Sanders, which has been a disaster up to now. Chuba Hubbard and Raheem Blackshear have flashed when called upon, but Achane would be an immediate upgrade on anything Carolina boasts in the backfield right now.