Panthers Make Perplexing Pick in Todd McShay's Latest 2022 NFL Mock Draft

Adam Taylor McKillop
The Carolina Panthers make a perplexing pick in Todd McShay's latest 2022 NFL Mock Draft on ESPN.
The Carolina Panthers make a perplexing pick in Todd McShay's latest 2022 NFL Mock Draft on ESPN. / Jared C. Tilton/GettyImages

After a third-straight five-win season, the Carolina Panthers playoff drought extended to four years. Carolina has pressing needs up and down the roster and fortunately, GM Scott Fitterer and the staff own the enticing No. 6 overall pick in this year's NFL Draft.

NFL insider Todd McShay released a second version of his annual mock draft, and has the Panthers making a somewhat perplexing pick that still fills a position of need.

Panthers Mock Draft

McShay has Carolina taking Cincinnati Bearcats cornerback Ahmad "Sauce" Gardner at No. 6.

This is an interesting choice considering the Panthers allowed the fourth-fewest passing yards in the league last year. There's also needs on the o-line and at quarterback, but a deeper dive explains the logic.

Superstar cornerback Stephon Gilmore is likely not coming back and there's questions around Donte Jackson's future as well. The Panthers defense still allowed 23.8 points per game (12th-most), mostly because the offense could not stay on the field, but that number would be higher without Gilmore and Jackson.

McShay explains this selection as simply "taking the best available," which makes sense given the number of holes on roster. Gardner is a surefire top pick wherever he lands. The three-time All-AAC was an All-American last year and is considered one of the two best cornerbacks in college after racking up nine interceptions and 18 passes defended in three years.

Carolina owns +4000 odds (T-22nd) odds to win Super Bowl 57 on FanDuel Sportsbook.

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Adam Taylor McKillop is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Adam Taylor also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username atmckillop. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.