Carolina Panthers 2024 NFL Mock Draft: What to do with limited capital and little hope

We're already looking ahead for Carolina, but what do they do without a first rounder in 2024?

Carolina Panthers, Bryce Young
Carolina Panthers, Bryce Young / Cooper Neill/GettyImages
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. EDGE. . Jack Sawyer. 3. player. 490. Jack Sawyer. . Jack Sawyer

With their second pick in the draft coming at the top of the third round, the Panthers select Ohio State pass rusher Jack Sawyer at no. 65 overall. A good rule of thumb when scouting pass rushers is usually to go with an Ohio State Buckeye, if all else fails. Sawyer could be next in line as one of the great Buckeyes to flourish in the NFL, and Carolina gets him in the third, which is outstanding value.

At 6-foot-4 and 265 pounds, Sawyer is a physical end who uses his hands to win, first and foremost. He has a powerful set of mitts that can reset the line of scrimmage and powerfully push back on opposing linemen.

His powerful hand and arm strength is a good start, but Sawyer also brings a ton of athleticism and quickness to the position. The number one thing you want to start with, if you're going to be a great pass rusher in this league, is a quick first step. Sawyer's burst off the line of scrimmage is evident, and it's what gets him in position to win on each snap.

Sawyer also has the ability to drop back into intermediate coverage at times, if need be. Think about a hybrid role, at times, like an Aidan Hutchinson. Sawyer is essentially a "lite" version of Hutchinson, at least for right now. If the Panthers can figure out how to keep Brian Burns on a long-term deal, pairing him with Sawyer could bring the pain on opposing offensive lines for years to come.