Rhule: Panthers will take 'best available player' with No. 8 pick
Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule gestures on field during the game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium.  Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Head coach Matt Rhule: Panthers will take 'best available player' with eighth pick

The Carolina Panthers appear to have landed their starting quarterback for Week 1 of the upcoming season when they traded for Sam Darnold. But many wondered if the team would still be interested in grabbing a quarterback if one fell to them with the eighth pick.

But head coach Matt Rhule seemed to rule out the possibility of drafting a quarterback in the first round, telling ESPN that the team is likely going to roll with the best available player strategy instead.

"We'll look at anything and everything,'' he said. "We recognize maybe there are positions we'd like to address in the draft, either via draft-day trades, post-draft trades or in the draft. I do think with the eighth pick you take the best available player."

Of course, this doesn't necessarily mean that the team won't take Trey Lance, Mac Jones or Justin Fields if they are available but Rhule does seem to be indicating that the Panthers don't feel like they need to draft a quarterback. Plus, it's looking increasingly unlikely that any of those quarterbacks will even be available by the eighth pick, as it is widely believed the first four picks in the draft will be quarterbacks.

Blake Harper is a writer based in New York. He's originally from San Diego and is one of the few Chargers fans left. He doesn't believe in ties and loves elaborate celebrations. Follow him on Twitter @beezyharps 

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