The Panthers have the opportunity to “evolve” their offense, and they’ll do it with a different kind of back.
With the eighth overall choice, the Panthers took Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey.
The Panthers were clearly in the market for a running back to supplement Jonathan Stewart, and might have preferred Leonard Fournette.
But when the Jaguars took the LSU star fourth overall, it cleared the decks for a non-traditional back there.
McCaffrey brings a different dimension, and is more of a pass-catcher who can work out of the slot and create matchup problems in the passing game. But they also just invested a top-10 pick who won’t necessarily be an every-down player.
That doesn’t seem to be an issue for General Manager Dave Gettleman, whose last two first-rounders were backups as rookies (defensive tackle Vernon Butler and linebacker Shaq Thompson).