The Panthers Need to Draft Derrick Brown

David Kaestle
Derrick Brown projects to be the first defensive tackle drafted.
Derrick Brown projects to be the first defensive tackle drafted. / Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

The Carolina Panthers come into 2019 at the beginning of a rebuild, or at least a retool. With a new coaching staff, headed up by Matt Rhule, along with a new quarterback in Teddy Bridgewater, plenty of things will be different in 2020. And if they have their way, the defensive performance will be one of them.

The Panthers had the 25th-ranked defense in 2019 according to Football Outsiders' DVOA metrics, but their run defense was ranked dead last by that same metric. When you add in the loss of Luke Keuchley (retirement) and Gerald McCoy (free agency), that unit could be even worse next season.

Needless to say, improving their run defense might be the Panthers' top priority heading into the NFL Draft. Enter Derrick Brown, the defensive tackle out of Auburn, expected to be the first interior lineman off the board and readily available when Carolina is on the clock at No. 7.

Brown was a monster against the run in college and it projects to be his biggest strength at the next level as well. A unanimous All-American, SEC Defensive Player of the Year, and the anchor of an Auburn defense that ranked No. 24 in the nation in rushing yards allowed per game in 2019, Brown looks like the complete package on the interior defensive line.

When you have the chance to draft the best player at a position that is arguably your biggest need, you pounce, and that's exactly what Carolina needs to do if Derrick Brown is available at No. 7.

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David Kaestle is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, David also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username davekaestle. 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.