Grading Carolina Panthers' last five second-round picks ahead of 2024 draft

How have the Carolina Panthers fared with their recent second-round selections?
Jonathan Mingo
Jonathan Mingo / Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
5 of 5

Greg Little

  • Offensive Tackle | Ole Miss Rebels
  • No. 37 overall | 2019 NFL Draft

The Carolina Panthers needed a future franchise left tackle entering the 2019 NFL Draft. This was quickly becoming an ongoing frustration and something those in power had difficulty solving. After striking gold in the second round by drafting right tackle Taylor Moton in 2017, they decided on a similar approach in pursuit of better fortunes.

Greg Little was the pick at No. 37 overall. This was seen as a little high by most analysts and pre-draft projections. However, the athleticism he displayed at Ole Miss indicated a productive NFL career could be in the offing if given enough time to develop.

Little had trouble settling in. He suffered some frustrating injury problems as a rookie, featuring in just 224 snaps on offense. The edge protector didn't look the most comfortable, so the jury was well and truly out heading into Year 2.

Any hopes Little had of breaking into the starting lineup were dented when the Panthers' new regime led by Matt Rhule traded for Pro Bowl left tackle Russell Okung. His snaps were restricted to 144 as a result, which was a damning indictment of how a different set of decision-makers perceived his talent.

After failing to demonstrate the necessary growth during the 2021 offseason, the Panthers had seen enough. Little was traded to the Miami Dolphins for nothing more than a 2022 seventh-round selection. This was spent on cornerback Kalon Barnes, who couldn't make the team.

Little's health problems and poor performance continued to plague him. He left for the Houston Texans in 2023 but was waived with an injury settlement and hasn't been seen in the league since.

Grade: F

Marty Hurney is a respected talent evaluator high up the draft order. Unfortunately for the Panthers, deciding to bring Little into the fold was arguably one of the worst decisions he ever made as general manager.