With the rush of free agency in the rear view mirror it is time to focus in on the NFL Draft, specifically on team needs. In this article we look at the back-to-back-to-back division champions Carolina Panthers draft needs for 2016 as we approach the April 28th 1st round from Chicago. Nobody would’ve picked the Panthers to do what they did last year but going into 2016 they will be expected to come back just as strong, especially as they’ll have the chance to fill the few holes on their roster.
Biggest Need: Offensive Tackle
The Broncos showed the Panthers that they must get better play from their tackles in order to win it all, and as long as Oher and Remmers are their starters they will struggle to do that. Both guys are fine tackles, they will be able to start every game but against truly elite opponents they won’t be able to match up. By solidifying the edges of their offensive line the Panthers will be able to lean on their passing game when need be, against any opponent.
Other Needs: Safety, Pass Rusher, Wide Receiver
I think it is safe to say that Roman Harper is passed it now and though Kurt Coleman has played well over the last couple of years, he isn’t much more than a good starter, so they need some help in their defensive backfield. Along with showing the Panthers the value of good tackles, the Broncos showed them the value of a formidable pass rush. Though their defensive line has some very nice pieces, they could really do with an explosive edge rusher to boost their pass rush. The Panthers will have Kelvin Benjamin back next year, but Newton could really do with a true number 2 receiver. Ginn is a nice deep threat but not a true number 2 guy and neither is Philly Brown. If the Panthers could role out Benjamin, Olsen and a better number 2, their passing game could really explode.