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NFL Draft: Panthers follow up Bryce Young pick by giving him weapon with Ole Miss WR Jonathan Mingo

The Panthers are giving Bryce Young a former SEC rival as a potential top target. (Photo by Kevin Langley/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
The Panthers are giving Bryce Young a former SEC rival as a potential top target. (Photo by Kevin Langley/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) (Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Step one for the Carolina Panthers at the 2023 NFL Draft was to select Bryce Young with the first overall pick. Step two was to give the former Alabama quarterback a new target.

With the 39th overall pick, the Panthers selected Ole Miss wide receiver Jonathan Mingo early in the second round.

Ranked 73rd on the big board of Yahoo Sports' Charles McDonald, the 6-foot-2, 220 pound Mingo posted 51 catches, 861 receiving yards and five touchdowns in 13 games in his senior year at Ole Miss. He's a big target the Panthers are likely hoping will turn into a go-to receiver for Young as the two develop.

Mingo will join a receiver room in Carolina headlined by veteran free agent acquisitions Adam Thielen and D.J. Chark, so it might take a while for him to become a top target. Of course, there is still a franchise receiver-sized hole on the Carolina roster after the team traded D.J. Moore to the Chicago Bears as part of the deal that landed them the pick they used to get Young.

With the level of draft capital used to get Mingo, he's their first crack at finding a replacement.

Mingo was the fifth wide receiver taken in the draft after a run of four straight in the first round, which saw Jaxon Smith-Njigba go to the Seattle Seahawks, Quentin Johnston go the Los Angeles Chargers, Zay Flowers go to the Baltimore Ravens and Jordan Addison go the Minnesota Vikings.