Carolina Panthers 7-round 2024 NFL mock draft: Bye week dilemmas

Johnny Wilson
Johnny Wilson / Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports
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Carolina Panthers draft Marshawn Lloyd

  • Running Back | USC Trojans
  • No. 164 overall

Miles Sanders has been a major disappointment since his big-money move in free agency. Injuries and scheme played a role in his early demise, but the Carolina Panthers have a huge decision to make with the Pro Bowler if he cannot progress with Thomas Brown now calling plays.

Chuba Hubbard's been a bright spot and deserves more involvement. Raheem Blackshear's flashed, but he was also a healthy scratch on numerous occasions and it remains to be seen whether he'll be around beyond the 2023 campaign.

If the Panthers can hit on a Day 3 running back, they'll benefit enormously. Although he's a little on the small side, Marshawn Lloyd is a pocket rocket capable of becoming a surprise most teams won't see coming.

Lloyd transferred to USC from South Carolina in time for the 2023 campaign and has shown no signs of slowing down. Despite being just 5-foot-9, the backfield presence is able to identify holes and burst through them with a low center of gravity that's incredibly difficult to counteract.

The prospect is thick-framed and has the explosiveness needed to gain significant yardage in open spacing. Perhaps the most surprising element of his influence is in pass protection and recognizing blitzes with supreme effectiveness.

Once Lloyd has more conviction in his initial decisions at the line of scrimmage, someone is going to have a real player on their hands. Will that be the Panthers? Time will tell on that one.