After trading a bounty to move up to the first overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, the Carolina Panthers added some key franchise cornerstones with their draft capital. From their quarterback of the future to a promising talent on the outside, the Panthers could be set to make noise in 2023.
We break down the team’s draft picks and assess the potential impact on fantasy football.
Panthers 2023 draft picks
Round 1: No. 1 overall (from Bears) — Bryce Young, QB, Alabama
Round 2: No. 39 — Jonathan Mingo, WR, Ole Miss
Round 3: No. 80 — D.J. Johnson, LB, Oregon
Round 4: No. 114 — Chandler Zavala, OG, NC State
Round 5: No. 145 — Jammie Robinson, S, Florida State
Carolina already had some solid pieces on the roster, including a very formidable defense that played inspired football under interim coach Steve Wilks. The clear question marks were around quarterback and receiver, and they confidently addressed those with Young and Mingo.
Did Panthers fill needs?
There’s been a glaring need at the quarterback position over the last few seasons for Carolina, and the belief is that they now have their long-term answer. Drafting Young with the first overall pick was a no-brainer, and new head coach Frank Reich should be equipped to help him transition to the pros. The Panthers also picked up a nice weapon on the outside in Mingo, who could develop to be the future heir apparent to the departed D.J. Moore.
Young and Mingo jump off the page immediately as potential fantasy targets for the coming season, though it remains to be seen whether they are surefire options at the start. Young doesn’t possess the strongest arm of this year’s QB class, but he has the best instinct and IQ of the bunch. Capable fantasy starting QBs tend to be a dime a dozen, so it might be worth stashing Young on your roster for the long haul or in a dynasty league.
You can’t go wrong with giving this award to their No. 1 overall pick. The Panthers have had solid talent over the years, but have been hindered by inconsistency from the likes of Sam Darnold and Baker Mayfield. Young enters the door as the clear future of their franchise, which should be music to the ears of the Panthers' front office and fans alike.