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Found 31 results

  1. Would you be willing to send a 7th rounder to the pats for Obi? I remember everyone wanting him in the draft a couple years back, he’s an athletic freak and could definitely play FS. New England seems willing to trade him, I think it’s worth a shot low risk high reward. We are really the only team that could offer him a chance to truly develop, and we could reap the rewards.
  2. That's player evaluation. 14. WR HAKEEM BUTLER, IOWA STATE Age: 23 | Athletic Profile: 80th percentile Where He Wins: Chris Ballard talks about the difficulties in evaluating receivers out of college, mainly due to them not facing physical press coverage. That is not Butler, as he has plenty of snaps face up against corners. Variety of releases versus press. Sometimes a bit slow with those releases, but he doesn't give up and creates that separation. Used all over the formation. Powerful YAC vs Oklahoma. Outstanding body control to adjust on floated targets. Heck, even saw him sink his hips and run a whip route on 4th down versus Iowa. At 6-foot-5, 227 pounds. Forecast: I don’t understand why Butler isn’t viewed as the No. 1 receiver in this class. I understand there were drops last season, but I try not to let a percentage of snaps cloud an entire list of positives. Butler wins at every level from every alignment. 36. S CHAUNCEY GARDNER-JOHNSON, FLORIDA Age: 21 | Athletic Profile: 66th percentile Where He Wins: Likely projects as a big nickel, third safety who fills the slot and aggressively plays outside runs or crashes the line. He also has positive reps as a split safety in the back half, anticipating targets and peeling off routes to make plays on the ball, like versus Michigan. Times he starts play on one side in the slot then makes the play on the other side of the field when recognizing run. Physical Forecast: Dane Brugler passed along word that CGJ’s interviews might not have been spectacular, so expect a selection in round 4 or 5. His on-field play warrants that. 42. CB JULIAN LOVE, NOTRE DAME Age: 21 | Athletic Profile: 60th percentile Where He Wins: Reads quarterbacks eyes and closes on the football. Often times he is one step in front of the quarterback, and that extra tick allows him to disrupt rather than allowing a completion. Love played a lot of off coverage and showed good mirror skills to stick with receivers who closed his cushion. Forecast: From my seat it looked like Notre Dame ran quite a bit of cover 2 zone, and the league more than ever is looking for press man corners or stick with receivers early on their release and stay in phase in routes. Love did not have many exposures in that. His best fit might be inside in the slot. 44. EDGE CHRISTIAN MILLER, ALABAMA Age: 23 | Athletic Profile: Injured Where He Wins: It is difficult to find his caliber of bend and flexibility to take advantage of positive positioning as a pass rusher. Not hyperbole, some snaps he gets parallel to the ground, which decreases his target zone, and allows him to break past the OL’s hips. Even if he gets beyond quarterback depth, he wants to work back inside. Miller lined up on both sides and has exposures of winning left and right. Forecast: Miller’s has missed most of the draft process with a hamstring injury. For a team that wants to be more multiple and utilize stand up rushers, he should intrigue. 53. IDL RENELL WREN, ARIZONA STATE Age: 24 | Athletic Profile: 77th percentile Where He Wins: Absolutely bull rushed his OL to the floor in first play vs Washington in 2017. Plays 1T and 3T. Locks out and finds ball to work towards making a play. Vision through separation. Carries weight very well, competes at a high level. His game is built on creating disruption in his first two steps. Forecast: There are a limited number of athletic interior disruptors in this class, and Wren is one. 58. S DEIONTE THOMPSON, ALABAMA Age: 21 | Athletic Profile: Injured Where He Wins: Best in a middle of field role, displaying range and closing quicks to make a play on receivers and ball carriers. He’s all about undercutting passes at the intermediate and downfield portions of coverage or closing and aiming low. On contested catches, he likes to wrap up with one arm and extend to disrupt the receiver's hands with the other. Forecast: Injury and down 2018 player likely is the driving factor in Thompson still being available on Day 3. 59. EDGE ANTHONY NELSON, IOWA Age: 22 | Athletic Profile: 78th percentile Where He Wins: Has a variety of moves that all resulted in success. His two-hand press-pull-release works in one on one situations. If he faces a tight end, Nelson can bully them back with a bull rush, then release when winning the balance battle. He also shows bend to maximize position on the outside. Forecast: The more I watched him, the more I liked him. Nelson has a pass rush plan and quite good movement skills, especially in tight areas, for a pass rusher of his size. 62. EDGE D’ANDRE WALKER, ALABAMA Age: 22 | Athletic Profile: ? Where He Wins: Squatty edge rusher who can also work as a drop end. He’s a bit like a condensed Josh Allen. His goal is to get to quarterback depth with his tackle catching up, then using his shorter frame to lean and take a tight line to the quarterback. Forecast: Often used as the fourth rusher but in a two-point stance. Wins on an outside line, but also closes quickly looping inside. Crashes down the line with intensity. 67. IOL DRU SAMIA, OKLAHOMA Age: 22 | Athletic Profile: 18th percentile Where He Wins: Easy mover who is always under control. Very good at staying active when left uncovered, checking defenders with his eyes and hands while not losing balance, then working to the second level. Smart player to recognize tackle-end stunts. Works to get back in phase when overextension does happen, and uses that momentum to still gain positive positioning. Forecast: Obviously played along the best offensive line in college football. Showed well during Senior Bowl week. Finisher. 69. EDGE MAXX CROSBY, EASTERN MICHIGAN Age: ? | Athletic Profile: 88th percentile Where He Wins: A bit hectic in his plan, as his hands and body can get animated and out of sync, but Crosby is super slippery. His athleticism shows up in his fluid movements and how he gets skinny to work the shoulders and angles of his blockers. Forecast: He’s wild and takes himself out of too many plays. Not knowing what you’re getting out of him every snap is a drawback, but if a team harnesses that movement, he can at least be a team’s third rusher. 72. WR Riley Ridley, Georgia 116. iDL Cortez Broughton, Cincinnati 73. RB Devine Ozigbo, Nebraska 117. LB Drue Tranquill, Notre Dame 76. WR Stanley Morgan, Nebraska 118. iOL Trevon Tate, Memphis 78. WR Emanuel Hall, Missouri 119. CB Corey Ballentine, Washburn 86. S Amani Hooker, Iowa 121. WR Kelvin Harmon, NC State 87. iOL Hjalte Froholdt, Arkansas 123. CB Jordan Brown, SDSU 89. CB Isaiah Johnson, Houston 125. TE Foster Moreau, LSU 93. iOL Phil Haynes, Wake Forest 126. TE Alizé Mack, Notre Dame 94. iOL Lamont Gaillard, Georgia 127. RB James Williams. Washington St 95. iDL Daniel Wise, Kansas 128. iDL Michael Dogbe, Temple 97. CB Jimmy Moreland, JMU 129. iDL John Cominsky, Charleston 98. CB Amani Oruwariye, Penn St 131. iDL Kingsley Keke, Texas A&M 100. S Marvell Tell, USC 132. iDL Armon Watts, Arkansas 104. LB Mack Wilson, Alabama 133. EDGE Jordan Brailford, Oklahoma St 106. EDGE Charles Omenihu, Texas 137. CB Donnie Lewis Jr., Tulane 107. LB Blake Cashman, Minnesota 141. WR KeeSean Johnson, Fresno St 109. TE Trevon Wesco, WVU 142. WR Hunter Renfrow, Clemson 110. S Ugo Amadi, Oregon 143. CB Kris Boyd, Texas 112. RB Bryce Love, Stanford 144. LB Vosean Joseph, Florida 114. iDL Daylon Mack, Texas A&M 145. LB Ben Burr-Kirven, Washington
  3. 30 Private Visits List: OT – Tytus Howard, Alabama State (Texans) C – Erik McCoy, Texas A&M OT – Kaleb McGary, Washington (Falcons) DT – Dre’Mont Jones, Ohio State S – Darnell Savage, Maryland (Packers) DE – Brian Burns, Florida State (#16) DE – Montez Sweat, Mississippi State (Redskins) S – Taylor Rapp, Washington OT – Andre Dillard, Washington State (Eagles) DT – Khalen Saunders, Western Illinois QB – Clayton Thorson, Northwestern S – Johnathan Abram, Mississippi State (Raiders) CB – Byron Murphy, Washington LB – Christian Miller, Alabama OT – Bobby Evans, Oklahoma QB – Jarrett Stidham, Auburn OT – Jawaan Taylor, Florida OT – Greg Little, Ole Miss DE – Maxx Crosby, Eastern Michigan OT – Cody Ford, Oklahoma CB – Lonnie Johnson Jr, Kentucky OT – Yodny Cajuste, West Virginia
  4. Josh Norris‏Verified account @JoshNorris FollowFollow @JoshNorris More In his afternoon post, @AlbertBreer says the teams he's heard most open to trading up are the #Panthers (16) and #Texans (23). "In all likelihood, it’d be a move to get one of the top three tackles." Keep in mind, HOU has two 2nds, and CAR has two 3rds
  5. Hey guys, I have a Panthers blog that I started a few weeks back. I got tired of watching David Newton of ESPN butcher our players names and some of fan blogs I've seen can have crazy opinions or entertain all rumors without any basis of fact (like when we were supposedly getting Antonio Brown...hint..we were NEVER getting Antonio Brown). I've been seeing so much back and forth about if the Panthers should draft a QB this year, and if we do, how high should he go. I'm going to copy and paste my blog post I wrote yesterday for you guys to read and comment on. If you guys wanna check out some more of my blog, just go to the link and subscribe. https://richiegreene6.wixsite.com/panthersfanspeak Otherwise, let's hear your opinions on what I have to say! Keep Pounding. ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ I've been seeing a ton of chatter since the 2018 season ended that the Carolina Panthers need to address the backup quarterback position in the upcoming draft. This sentiment was popular coming off of a season where Cam, the franchise player, was sidelined early again to heal an ailing throwing shoulder that has been a problem since the end of the 2016 season. In the last two games, backup QB's Taylor Heinicke and Kyle Allen saw action, with the former getting injured in his first start for the Panthers against the Buccaneers and the latter getting hurt midway through a good performance against the Saints in the last game of the season. While Heinicke didn't impress much against Tampa, Allen did in his debut, albeit against a Saints team that essentially deemed the game meaningless since their playoff seeding was locked up. Kyle Allen's performance led the team to their first win after losing 7 straight games. He showed poise and confidence in the pocket, and there was some really good rapport with our promising young trio of receivers, especially for a third string quarterback. It was a nice highlight reel to wrap up what turned out to be a disappointing season. He did as well as a you could expect a third string quarterback to do in his first start. He exceeded expectations, really. It has been reported that Carolina has met extensively with QB's in this year's draft, including West Virginia's Will Grier, who is predicted to go around the 3rd round. Head Coach Ron Rivera and General Manager Marty Hurney denied that there was any special attention being paid to the quarterback class and insisted that it was no different than any other year, summing it up as normal due diligence. Still, there is a pretty vocal section of Panthers fandom and media that is suggesting that the Panthers NEED to focus on grabbing our backup/potential QB of the future in this year's draft, and that if someone was there in the 2nd/3rd/4th rounds, the Panthers may need to grab him. My opinion? Absolutely not. Before I start, I understand the fears. Cam had surgery on his throwing arm after injuring it near the end of the 2016 season. There have been questions ever since, especially about his patented deep ball. We watched his arm deteriorate after TJ Watt lowered his helmet into his throwing shoulder, and with it, the season collapsed. For every week after that game, we watched Cam unable to throw it past 30 yards. It was disheartening to watch. I get it. But let's calm down. Let's address why we need to be rational about this. 1. Cam Newton's arm health. Cam recently had shoulder scope surgery to remove scar tissue from the previous surgery, and there is widespread belief from the team that this was the last remaining issue hampering Newton's arm. Remember, before the TJ Watt hit, Cam Newton had this team at 6-2, was completing a career high percentage of his passes, and was on pace to potentially eclipse a lot of his 2015 MVP passing numbers. There were a few questionable moments, like why Heinicke was coming in to take Hail Marys in the Ravens game, but that can be explained by the scar tissue issue that is now removed. I realize there were a ton of gloom and doom narratives flying around where David Tepper was misquoted as saying Cam could be out for the entirety of the 2019 season, but those were completely unfounded. The team and Cam himself have said he could very well be ready to participate in Spring OTA's, though it could be in a limited capacity just to be safe. Regardless, there is no reason to think Cam Newton won't be ready to go for training camp and the season opener. We need to chill. 2. We have way more pressing needs. This Carolina team has done a great job of addressing needs this offseason, signing the likes of DE Bruce Irvin, Center Matt Paradis, WR Chris Hogan, and re-signing Daryl Williams and DT Kyle Love. We've set ourselves up in the draft to not be desperate at a number of positions, and in fact, improved some positions as well (center and WR, specifically). But let's not kid ourselves, at the moment, we are still too needy at certain positions to be a top-tier competitor. Our defense is our main concern right now, particularly the defensive line. Most people believe our first round pick will be spent on a young, pass rushing-saavy DE, and I, too, hope that is the case. The Panthers desperately need young talent injected into a defensive line that simply didn't get it done when it came to getting to the quarterback. Bruce Irvin is a great depth piece to add, but he's not a 1A to Mario Addison's 1B, and that's exactly what we need. If we don't hit on this pick, we can expect more of the same for the upcoming year. It's as simple as that. After that, FS may truly be our most desperate need. There is really no player I would feel confident putting back there right now. Who are our options? Da'Norris Searcy, who essentially missed the entire season due to concussion. Rashaan Gaulden, the 3rd round pick from last year who the team doesn't seem to know what to do with. The team has suggested they will try him anywhere from FS to nickel CB. Gaulden barely saw the field last year. A potential free agent? The likes of Eric Barry, Tre Boston, and Mike Mitchell are still available, but the team hasn't had stability in the secondary in years and needs coverage skills to compliment Eric Reid's box skills. Former Panther Tre Boston would be the most obvious choice if we were to go into free agency, but I'm not sure he's the long term answer we should be looking for to finally hit on. After DE and FS, I would argue that offensive line (left guard and tackle, especially), LB, nickel CB, and DT are all much more pressing needs than a QB. I could even make the argument that a backup RB to compliment and mimic Christian McCaffrey's skill set and give him a break on the field is more immediately pressing. Our WR group is set. DJ Moore, Curtis Samuel, Jarius Wright, Torrey Smith (if he survives after June 1st), and Chris Hogan is one of the best groups we've had in years. Our tight end group is set, assuming Greg Olsen's foot is truly healed as he has said. My point is, the Panthers seem very confident that Cam Newton is good to go, and there is no reason to think they are wrong. They need to load up on positions of need while he has so many young, cheap, explosive weapons right now to play with, which leads me to my last point. 3. If we are going to spend high on a QB, it better be THE QB of the future. Let's be real. If Cam goes down, our team's season is done. I know we just saw Philadelphia defy all odds and win a Super Bowl with their backup QB, but that is infinitely more the exception than the rule. Outside of Nick Foles, who else has done this? Tom Brady? Tom Brady is the most "exception-to-the-rule" example in the world: a 6th round nobody who is playing under the greatest coach and team the NFL has ever seen, while also being the greatest quarterback/winner to ever play. It was truly a perfect recipe for success...but that is just two extreme examples. You might as well play the lottery and hope for the same kind of outcome. At this stage, wasting high draft picks on a QB to either be the backup or the potential heir down the road is just hurting your chances at winning with your proven MVP-caliber, "face of the franchise" superstar QB right NOW. For the first time in his career, Cam Newton has dynamic, explosive, and potentially dominant weapons to play with. An offensive core of Christian McCaffrey, Dj Moore, Curtis Samuel, Greg Olsen, Jarius Wright, and Ian Thomas are all a perfect blend of game-breaking and efficiently reliable. The offense Norv Turner has created is perfectly tailored to a QB like Cam. The offensive line, if they can stay healthy, has tons of talent right now and may offer his best protection since 2015. With Ron Rivera calling what could be a hybrid defense next year, Luke Kuechly, Kawaan Short, and Mario Addison being the proven veterans with star power, and with the expected, continued improvement of players like Donte Jackson, Bradberry, Eric Reid, and Shaq Thompson (fingers crossed), the Panthers are 1-2 big impact draft hits away from being a top tier team. My Final Thoughts: It would simply be unfair and reckless to waste draft capital on a quarterback that would essentially just be insurance. Is it risky to think this way? It just depends on how you think, I suppose. My philosophy on drafting quarterbacks is this: if you're going to draft one, draft THE guy you think is your immediate future. Spend high and go all out to get the best player at the most important position in the game. The Panthers are nowhere near in a dire situation at QB. If it's strictly for a backup role, would anyone we draft be instantly better than what we could have in Kyle Allen, and even if they were an upgrade, isn't it much smarter to spend that pick on a player with the same caliber of talent at a position that isn't so vital to a team as quarterback? And if it's for the future down the road, would the team be giving up on Cam Newton prematurely and thus sabotaging his best chance at continued success as it currently stands? Would the team be selling itself short and being negligent, even, by not doing everything possible to land the BEST option available to them at that position? 9 times out of 10, if you're going to groom a quarterback to be the true successor, you find that guy in the 1st round after meticulous planning and with conviction. You do it as your current guy is in the twilight of his career or the end of the road can be seen, like an Aaron Rodgers or Patrick Mahomes situation. You go all in with that guy, because that guy will basically determine your future success. The Panthers need to be all in with Cam Newton. Stop fussing over the "but what if" and "but down the road!" nightmare scenarios. The overwhelming odds are that if Cam goes down, we go down for the immediate future anyway. Neither Kyle Allen nor our random mid round pick rookie QB will be our savior. Until next time...and next week's draft!.. KEEP POUNDING
  6. CAROLINA PANTHERS Biggest Need: Defensive Line. Carolina’s zone-based 4-3 defense is predicated on having a dominant four-man rush. Inside, the personnel is decent: Kawann Short remains elite and Dontari Poe still moves well for a 345-pounder. However, Poe can be cut for a $10 million in cap savings next year, which might prove tempting. And his backup, 2016 first-rounder Vernon Butler, though worth examining one more year, has teased but not come close to fully delivering on his draft status. Outside, there are more questions, both short-and long-term. Mario Addison is in a contract year and will cost a lot to retain. Expect GM Marty Hurney to pony up. But opposite Addison, Bruce Irvin is playing on a one-year deal and would probably be best served in a rotational role. Hidden Need: Defensive Back. Re-signing Eric Reid for $22M over three years back in February was smart, as this year safeties wound up costing gobs on the open market. But who will play alongside Reid? Concussions kept Da’Norris Searcy out of all but two games last season, and before that he was merely somewhere between a high-level backup and low-level starter in Tennessee. 2018 third-round pick Rashaan Gaulden, who is more athletic than veteran backup Colin Jones, was the No. 3 safety last year and could get a look as a starter. That, however, would leave a void in the slot, where Gaulden, an inside corner in college, has been floated as a possible replacement for released veteran Captain Munnerlyn. With the strong safety and slot corner having somewhat similar responsibilities in Carolina’s first and second down zone coverages, and with Reid capable of aligning anywhere, deciding which secondary position to fill could come down to simply choosing the best player from a pool of free safeties, strong safeties and slot corners. Also Looking For: Wide Receiver. Kelvin Benjamin and Devin Funchess did not work out, but the logic behind selecting them early in the 2014 and 2015 drafts made sense: they were big-bodied targets for Cam Newton, a hot-and-cold fastball thrower who tends to miss high and wide. The Panthers are not particularly deep at receiver and need another perimeter target with a large catch-radius. Who They Can Get: The can certainly fortify the front four. Clemson DT Christian Wilkins is an option; though would he be redundant with Short? Clemson teammate Dexter Lawrence would give them a Poe replacement. The immediate value is on the edge, where they might be choosing between an edge burner in Florida State’s Brian Burns, an edge-setting complementary pass-rusher in Clemson’s Clelin Ferrell or perhaps undersized, high-motor sack artist Jaylon Ferguson of Louisiana Tech. They might have to make a move from the middle of the second round to get one of the top centerfield prospects—Delaware’s Nasir Adderley, Florida’s Chauncey Gardner-Johnson and Alabama’s Deionte Thompson, all fringe first-rounders, are probably the best fits.
  7. David Montgomery: Carolina Panthers Christian McCaffrey has proven himself to be a force, generating 1,965 yards from scrimmage (6.0 yards per touch) in 2018, but the two-year veteran doesn't have the strength to run through people. Thus, the Panthers could still stand to add someone who can run the ball inside. Montgomery is big enough (5-foot-10, 222 pounds) to get in there and muscle his way forward in short-yardage and goal-line situations -- plus, he has enough pass-catching ability (71 catches, 582 receiving yards in three seasons at Iowa State) that he won't limit what Carolina can do when he's on the field. The former Cyclone projects as a nice backfield complement to McCaffrey
  8. This week on the Huddle Podcast Sammi and I sat down with Jonathan Jones of the Charlotte Observer to discuss the Carolina Panthers NFL Draft and more. Topics include: - Top Panthers Needs - Likely round 1 targets - Offensive tackles - various off topic musings and thoughts ... don't like it? Don't care. Direct MP3 Link -> Clicky iTunes -> Clicky or listen right here in your browser....
  9. http://footballgameplan.com/fbgps-2015-nfl-draft-special-inside-the-war-room-carolina-panthers/ Good morning Panther fans! Here's my inside the war room special for you guys. Enjoy! Em
  10. The Panthers have not drafted a quarterback since 2011... they are due. Even though it doesn't appear to be a team need on the surface, the Panthers would be wise to invest a mid to late round pick on a quarterback project. Yes, Cam Newton is the starter and in all probability the long term solution at QB. However, backup Derek Anderson is a free agent in 2016 and should get quite a few looks from around the league. It is likely a team would be willing to give him a chance to start, something he does not have in Carolina. Joe Webb is also a free agent next season. The Panthers like Webb as a fill in for many positions, but not as a full time backup QB. So don't be shocked if this year Dave Gettleman selects a QB on day 3 of the draft. A guy they may be targeting is Oregon State senior Sean Mannion. Mannion is a projected round 4-5 QB, which places him squarely in the area the Panthers may be considering a project QB to be a high value pick. At 6'6 and 229 pounds, he has the physical build to be an elite NFL pocket passer. Throw in the fact that he played in a pro style offense, may be the most accurate passer in the draft, and has great arm strength and it becomes easy to imagine him being a 4th or 5th round steal. His lack of mobility seems to be the only reason he will fall in the draft. Luckily, the Panthers aren't concerned about mobility in their backup QB. (See Derek Anderson) Skills competition: Highlights: (Notice the pocket presence)
  11. As the NFL Draft is one month away, I thought I would lay out for you who I believe are the Carolina Panthers top targets are in round 1. I've crunched the numbers, looked at the fit, checked the visitations, and listened to the whispers. So without further ado.... Carolina Panthers Round 1 Possibilities Andrus Peat - OT - Stanford A NFL ready tackle that stands 6'7 and weighs 315 pounds. Have you heard the Panthers are in need of an offensive tackle? Yeah? Well, this could be the guy. It is somewhat doubtful that Peat lasts until pick 25, but it is possible. If he is there, he is the pick. Todd Gurley - RB - Georgia Aside from the injury, there isn't much not to love about this kid. The future of Jonathan Stewart is less than certain for next season. Gurley is one of the more talented runners to come out of the draft in years. If he should fall to 25, Gettleman would have a tough time not selecting him. Huge value at 25. Landon Collins - S - Alabama Had a nice meeting with the Panthers a while back. He is a prototypical Ron Rivera strong safety, that is to say he is aggressive against the run. Many will tell you he can't cover, but don't listen to them. You aren't rated the #1 safety in the draft if you cannot play in the defensive backfield. Could replace Roman Harper on day 1. Jaelen Strong - WR - Arizona St As stated in my current receiver depth chart, the Panthers are without a solid #2 receiver to compliment Kelvin Benjamin. Well, Jaelen Strong could be the ideal guy at pick 25 to fill that need. Not the fastest receiver in the draft, but makes up for it in routes, hands, work ethic, and instincts. Gettleman prefers these types of players as seen in previous drafts. (insert "the game is not played in underwear" audio clip) Cedric Ogbuehi - OT - Texas A&M An offensive tackle with a torn ACL in round 1? Yes, it could happen. If none of the above prospects are available in round 1, I feel the Panthers are interested enough in Ogbuehi to select him. If not for the ACL injury, Cedric is easily a top 10 pick. Like Gurley, it would be hard for Gettleman to pass up this kind of value. Remember, Gettleman is a 5 year plan guy. Selecting a player that may not play his rookie year is very possible. So there you have it, five guys I feel have a good shot at being selected in round 1 by the Panthers.
  12. <p>One of the more intriguing defensive players in this years draft is Shaq Thompson out of Washington. While reading up on his abilities, I couldn't help but make comparison's to the Panthers own Thomas Davis. Davis is in the twilight of his career, and now would be the time to groom an eventual replacement. Shaq Thompson might be the perfect candidate. Here is why... </p><div class="getty embed image" style="background-color:#fff;display:inline-block;font-family:'Helvetica Neue',Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif;color:#a7a7a7;font-size:11px;width:100%;max-width:594px;"><div style="overflow:hidden;position:relative;height:0;padding:66.666667% 0 0 0;width:100%;"><iframe src="//embed.gettyimages.com/embed/464197094?et=4WzUCeEVSTBuGhO4bkfhzQ&sig=TyTes7zgM3jcWewBnVSaJYR3WOstTvvONzjJcLPaoFs=&caption=true" width="594" height="396" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" style="display:inline-block;position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></div><p style="margin:0;"></p><div style="padding:0;margin:0 0 0 10px;text-align:left;"><a data-ipb='nomediaparse' href='http://www.gettyimages.com/detail/464197094' target="_blank" style="color:#a7a7a7;text-decoration:none;font-weight:normal !important;border:none;display:inline-block;">View image</a> | <a data-ipb='nomediaparse' href='http://www.gettyimages.com' target="_blank" style="color:#a7a7a7;text-decoration:none;font-weight:normal !important;border:none;display:inline-block;">gettyimages.com</a></div></div><p> </p><p>First, the measurables ... </p><p> </p><p><strong>Thomas Davis 2005 Draft Profile</strong></p><p> </p><p>Height - 6'1</p><p>Weight - 230</p><p>40 yard dash - 4.6</p><p>3-Cone - 7.10</p><p>Vertical - 36.5</p><p>20 Yard Shuttle - 4.01</p><p> </p><p><strong>Shaq Thompson 2015 Draft Profile</strong></p><p> </p><p>Height - 6'0</p><p>Weight - 228</p><p>40 yard dash - 4.64</p><p>3-cone - 6.99</p><p>Vertical - 33.5</p><p>20 yard shuttle - 4.08</p><p> </p><p>As you can see, the two have a similar size, with Thomas Davis being slightly taller. Thomas Davis has slightly faster straight line speed, but Shaq Thompson was faster in the 3 cone (a more important measurement for a linebacker, imo). </p><p> </p><p>Most NFL scouts have Thompson playing a OLB in a 4-3 scheme but have some concerns about his size and ability to keep enough weight on. Thomas Davis had these very same concerns surrounding him, enough so that coach John Fox tried him at safety early in his career. I am not so sure if Shaq Thompson's case that is of real concern to the Panthers. They have a good history of keeping guys bulked up through their training staff. </p><p> </p><p>Like Thomas Davis who played safety and linebacker at Georgia, Thompson also played outside and inside linebacker and safety on occasion. He also played running back, which is pretty incredible. This tells me this kid is just pure football player, and if there is one thing that Dave Gettleman loves, its real football players. </p><p> </p><p>Shaq Thompson is all over the place on the mock drafts. Most agree he is a first round selection, but no one knows where he should fall. It is hard to project with a player like Thompson. Many teams may pass on him due to his uncertainty. It will take a strong defensive mind to take him and put him in a place of success. </p><p> </p><p>Should Shaq fall to the 25th pick, don't be shocked if the Panthers pull the trigger on him. </p>
  13. One of the more intriguing defensive players in this years draft is Shaq Thompson out of Washington. While reading up on his abilities, I couldn't help but make comparison's to the Panthers own Thomas Davis. Davis is in the twilight of his career, and now would be the time to groom an eventual replacement. Shaq Thompson might be the perfect candidate. Here is why... View image | gettyimages.com First, the measurables ... Thomas Davis 2005 Draft Profile Height - 6'1 Weight - 230 40 yard dash - 4.6 3-Cone - 7.10 Vertical - 36.5 20 Yard Shuttle - 4.01 Shaq Thompson 2015 Draft Profile Height - 6'0 Weight - 228 40 yard dash - 4.64 3-cone - 6.99 Vertical - 33.5 20 yard shuttle - 4.08 As you can see, the two have a similar size, with Thomas Davis being slightly taller. Thomas Davis has slightly faster straight line speed, but Shaq Thompson was faster in the 3 cone (a more important measurement for a linebacker, imo). Most NFL scouts have Thompson playing a OLB in a 4-3 scheme but have some concerns about his size and ability to keep enough weight on. Thomas Davis had these very same concerns surrounding him, enough so that coach John Fox tried him at safety early in his career. I am not so sure if Shaq Thompson's case that is of real concern to the Panthers. They have a good history of keeping guys bulked up through their training staff. Like Thomas Davis who played safety and linebacker at Georgia, Thompson also played outside and inside linebacker and safety on occasion. He also played running back, which is pretty incredible. This tells me this kid is just pure football player, and if there is one thing that Dave Gettleman loves, its real football players. Shaq Thompson is all over the place on the mock drafts. Most agree he is a first round selection, but no one knows where he should fall. It is hard to project with a player like Thompson. Many teams may pass on him due to his uncertainty. It will take a strong defensive mind to take him and put him in a place of success. Should Shaq fall to the 25th pick, don't be shocked if the Panthers pull the trigger on him.
  14. <div>The following is my best guess at what will transpire in rounds 1-3 of the NFL Draft next month as far as the Panthers are concerned. </div><div> </div><div>All three picks are not only the best players available, but also players whose football talents line up perfectly with what the Carolina Panthers do on the field. </div><div> </div><div>So, without further ado... </div><div> </div><div> </div><div> </div><div><span style="font-size:18px;"><strong>2015 Panthers Mock Rounds 1-3</strong></span></div><div> </div><div> </div><div><span style="font-size:18px;"><strong>Round 1 , Pick 25</strong></span></div><div> </div><div><strong>Landon Collins - S - Alabama</strong></div><div> </div><div>Gettleman practices what he preaches in picking the best player available, but also fills a need. Landon Collins is one of those guys that is projected high but could drop in the first round. He ran a good 40, but other than that had a rather average combine. He won’t drop out of the first round, but he could drop to the mid 20s where the Panthers will select him if available. </div><div> </div><div>Collins is a prototype Ron Rivera strong safety. He punishes runners and has sound tackling technique. He is the best run defense safety in the draft, and as Dave Gettleman always says, you have to first defend the run to be able to rush the passer. </div><div> </div><iframe width="300" height="169" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/rrewHLPO1b8" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><div> </div><div><span style="font-size:18px;"><strong>Round 2, Pick 57</strong></span></div><div> </div><div><strong>Jake Fisher - OT - Oregon</strong></div><div> </div><div>Fisher had arguably helped himself the most at the combine out of all offensive tackles, which will bump him up into the second round. Fisher isn’t the physical stud that the first round tackles are, but he is a true football player. The Ducks offensive line performance decreased drastically without Fisher in the lineup. Throw in the fact that he is accustomed to protecting a mobile QB, and this is a no brainer for the Panthers. </div><div> </div><iframe width="300" height="169" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/HPisipQR_gU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><div> </div><div><span style="font-size:18px;"><strong>Round 3, Pick 89</strong></span></div><div> </div><div><strong>Nick O’Leary - TE - FSU</strong></div><div> </div><div>If there is one thing Ron Rivera and Mike Shula love, its an H-Back. A guy that can line up as a tight end or fullback opens up plenty of matchups that would be favorable to the Panthers. They tried this with both Ed Dickson and Brandon Williams last season, but had limited success. Nick O’Leary is the best H-Back this year’s draft and a good value in the late 3rd round.</div><div> </div><div>In addition, even though he is not much of a deep threat, he is a reliable receiver with solid hands for Cam Newton to target in mid to short yardage situations. He was a safety outlet for Winston at FSU, he can be one for Newton in Carolina. </div><div> </div><iframe width="300" height="169" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/mg2QmmGlGY8" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
  15. The following is my best guess at what will transpire in rounds 1-3 of the NFL Draft next month as far as the Panthers are concerned. All three picks are not only the best players available, but also players whose football talents line up perfectly with what the Carolina Panthers do on the field. So, without further ado... 2015 Panthers Mock Rounds 1-3 Round 1 , Pick 25 Landon Collins - S - Alabama Gettleman practices what he preaches in picking the best player available, but also fills a need. Landon Collins is one of those guys that is projected high but could drop in the first round. He ran a good 40, but other than that had a rather average combine. He won’t drop out of the first round, but he could drop to the mid 20s where the Panthers will select him if available. Collins is a prototype Ron Rivera strong safety. He punishes runners and has sound tackling technique. He is the best run defense safety in the draft, and as Dave Gettleman always says, you have to first defend the run to be able to rush the passer. Round 2, Pick 57 Jake Fisher - OT - Oregon FIsher had arguably helped himself the most at the combine out of all offensive tackles, which will bump him up into the second round. Fisher isn’t the physical stud that the first round tackles are, but he is a true football player. The Ducks offensive line performance decreased drastically without Fisher in the lineup. Throw in the fact that he is accustomed to protecting a mobile QB, and this is a no brainer for the Panthers. Round 3, Pick 89 Nick O’Leary - TE - FSU If there is one thing Ron Rivera and Mike Shula love, its an H-Back. A guy that can line up as a tight end or fullback opens up plenty of matchups that would be favorable to the Panthers. They tried this with both Ed Dickson and Brandon Williams last season, but had limited success. Nick O’Leary is the best H-Back this year’s draft and a good value in the late 3rd round. In addition, even though he is not much of a deep threat, he is a reliable receiver with solid hands for Cam Newton to target in mid to short yardage situations. He was a safety outlet for Winston at FSU, he can be one for Newton in Carolina.
  16. Justin Coleman - CB - Tennessee 5'11 , 185lbs This year I expect the Panthers to address their need for a nickel in the mid to late rounds of the NFL Draft. Last season we saw the Panthers adjust to not having a solid nickel option by often going with their "buffalo" package, which placed safety Colin Jones in the nickel spot. While this had positive results in run defense, it was a liability at times against the passing game. A guy they could be targeting is Tennessee corner Justin Coleman. View image | gettyimages.com The Panthers met with Coleman at the East West Shrine Game and were impressed with him. Coleman is a perfect fit for what the Carolina Panthers look for at the nickel position. Namely, tenacity and run stopping ability. Coleman spent most of his senior year at nickel for the Vols, and had his best college season to date. Coleman helped himself greatly at the NFL Combine when he ranked as one of the quickest corners, posting top 5 results in both the 20 and 40 yard shuttle. He posted a 4.5 40 yard dash which gave his straight line speed the 6th best ranking. Throw in the fact that his 20 reps on the bench press was the third best in the group and it is clear Coleman has the physical skills the Panthers look for at nickel. These impressive combine numbers could possibly take him out of the sixth or seventh rounds and up into the fourth or fifth. The Panthers are expected to have at least one compensatory draft pick in the area Coleman is projected to be selected. This only increases the odds of Gettleman pulling the trigger on him.
  17. Justin Coleman - CB - Tennessee 5'11 , 185lbs This year I expect the Panthers to address their need for a nickel in the mid to late rounds of the NFL Draft. Last season we saw the Panthers adjust to not having a solid nickel option by often going with their "buffalo" package, which placed safety Colin Jones in the nickel spot. While this had positive results in run defense, it was a liability at times against the passing game. A guy they could be targeting is Tennessee corner Justin Coleman. The Panthers met with Coleman at the East West Shrine Game and were impressed with him. Coleman is a perfect fit for what the Carolina Panthers look for at the nickel position. Namely, tenacity and run stopping ability. Coleman spent most of his senior year at nickel for the Vols, and had his best college season to date. Coleman helped himself greatly at the NFL Combine when he ranked as one of the quickest corners, posting top 5 results in both the 20 and 40 yard shuttle. He posted a 4.5 40 yard dash which gave his straight line speed the 6th best ranking. Throw in the fact that his 20 reps on the bench press was the third best in the group and it is clear Coleman has the physical skills the Panthers look for at nickel. These impressive combine numbers could possibly take him out of the sixth or seventh rounds and up into the fourth or fifth. The Panthers are expected to have at least one compensatory draft pick in the area Coleman is projected to be selected. This only increases the odds of Gettleman pulling the trigger on him.
  18. Along with Deangelo's departure I see many media outlets assuming the Panthers draft a running back. I am not so sure about that. Most point to the fact that the Panthers lost Tyler Gaffney last season to the Patriots, but they forget that Fozzy Whitaker was brought in as a replacement. Fozzy ended up making the team and was a bright spot, as we all know. Also, Darrin Reaves was recently re-signed for another season. Reaves showed real promise in camp last season but dealt with injuries late. He stepped in as a starter in one game and performed about the same as the other runningbacks behind that offensive line (3.6 a carry). The Panthers are not done with this kid yet. So, looking at the roster it could be... Jonathan Stewart Mike Tolbert Fozzy Whitaker Darrin Reaves Honestly, that is a pretty darn good lineup both in terms of starter quality and depth.
  19. With at least eight and maybe as many as 10 draft picks this year, I think the Carolina Panthers select more than one offensive tackle throughout the draft. It would not shock me to see two or even three taken. The OT position on the team is the weakest and most shallow of all positions. As you know, I am done with the thought of drafting more small school projects. I want the biggest, meanest guys from large schools. I don't want to hear about upside and potential because of physical gifts. I want football players. That said, here are a few later round (rounds 5-7) offensive tackles that I think may be worth looking at. Rob Havenstein - OT - Wisconsin 6'8" 332lbs Talk about your Hog Mollie. This guy is the size of David Foucault but actually has legitimate football program experience at Wisconsin. Three year starter at right tackle. I like Havenstein because he is one of those guys that doesn't look all that athletic. He isn't a physical specimen and won't do all that well in the combine strength tests, just like Andrew Norwell. Because of that he will drop to round 5 or 6. But this kid is a real football player and has that mean streak I always appreciate on the line. I'd love to see the Panthers groom this guy for the right side. Possibly spelling Trai Turner at guard as he is groomed for a tackle spot in coming years. Austin Shepard - OT - Alabama 6' 5" 320 Here is another guy the Panthers could use right away as a backup guard and groom for the future. He took over at right tackle for Bama in 2013 and performed well ever since. Stronger in the run game than edge rushers, which is why I think he starts out at guard and can be groomed for the right side. Comes from a small town in Georgia, will enjoy staying in the south. Plus, he definitely looks and sounds the part... Both of these guys are projected as right side players. It will be difficult to find a left tackle in the later rounds, but the right side is a definite possibility. I would be happy if the Panthers spent a 5th - 7th round draft pick on either (or both) of these guys.
  20. From Walter Football Justin Coleman, CB, Tennessee (EW) John Crockett, RB, North Dakota State (EW) Jamison Crowder, WR, Duke (SR) Garrett Grayson, QB, Colorado State (SR) John Miller, G, Louisville (EW) Steven Nelson, CB, Oregon State (SR) Ty Sambrailo, OT, Colorado State (SR) Wes Saxton, TE, South Alabama (EW) D'Joun Smith, CB, Florida Atlantic (SR) Damian Swann, CB, Georgia (EW) Jordan Taylor, WR, Rice (EW) Leterrius Walton, DT, Central Michigan (EW) Zach Zenner, FB, South Dakota State (EW) Breaking it down by soley the number of interviews, CB seems to be the heaviest emphasis... 4 CB 2 WR 1 RB 1 FB 1 TE 1 DT 1 OT 1 G 1 QB One of the most interesting prospect in my opinion here is Jamison Crowder who had a standout week at the Senior Bowl Could be an excellent compliment to the offense in the slot and an answer at punt returns. OT Ty Sambrailo is also an interesting prospect the Panthers interviewed. Some mocks have him going in the first round, but there is no way Gettleman reaches for him then. Walter Football has him going in the fourth round. He is all over the place in the mocks. The main concern around him appears to be his weight is mainly around the middle, and not in his legs. Will require some time in the weight room before he can play at the next level. Other than that, he has the size, arm span, and experience to be a solid tackle in the NFL. If he is still available in the third, he could be both the BPA and fill a need. Getts would pull the trigger on him.
  21. Here are what some of the more popular NFL Mock Draft websites are saying about the Panthers first round selection.... Walter Football La'el Collins, OT, LSU The Panthers couldn't block for Cam Newton whatsoever earlier in the season. The offensive line has been able to gel, but there are still some glaring holes there, particularly at both tackle positions. Bucky Brooks NFL.COM La'el Collins, OT, LSU It’s time for GM Dave Gettleman to upgrade the protection around Cam Newton. Drafttek Melvin Gordon, RB, Wisconsin Running Back is not the first position that comes to mind when you think about the Panthers' needs. However, DeAngelo Williams may not return and if the often-injured Jonathan Stewart is the lead back, the Panthers would be rolling the dice. Even if Stewart stays healthy, he will be 28 going into next season. Gordon would be the future. He reminds me of a bigger and stronger version of Jamaal Charles. CBS Sports Ereck Flowers, OT, Miami The Panthers need offensive line help in the worst way and unless they address the position in free agency, tackle is the favorite to be the pick here. This pick had been Texas A&M's Cedric Ogbuehi, but he will likely fall out of the first round due to his ACL tear, making Flowers a possibility for Carolina. FOX Sports T.J. Clemmings, OT, Pittsburgh Clemmings might be the most athletic tackle in this draft class. The 6-foot-5, 310-pound tackle isn't a road paver, per se, but he has great footwork and fluidity. He needs some work on the technical aspects of the game, but can contribute during his rookie season. Carolina's offensive line was a mess before hitting its stride in the season's final month. The unit could use a top-flight talent like Cummings. NFL Draft Geek Ereck Flowers, OT, Miami I'm not a Cam Newton supporter in the slightest, but you have to give him credit for managing any sort of offense behind arguably the worst offensive tackle combination in the NFL. Left tackle Byron Bell and right tackle Nate Chandler combined to be receive a negative 49.5 grade from Pro Football Focus, a combined 16 QB sacks allowed and Bell ranking second in the NFL 38 QB hurries allowed. Luckily for Carolina the 2015 NFL Draft is exceptionally deep with offensive tackles and they should be able to get a pretty good one late in the first round. Behind Andrus Peat, Miami's Ereck Flowers is my favorite as he's proven to be a nasty, tough and reliable left tackle who buries defenders in the run game. - See more at:
  22. If I had to choose a Panthers player form the pat to compare Tyler Gaffney to, I would have to go with Stephen Davis. In addition to having nearly the same size, they appear to have the same game as well. The Similarities: Both just over 6 foot. Both around 220ish Both have shorter strides while running. Davis learned to run lower in the NFL, Gaffney hopefully will as well. Both are more straight forward runners, have limited shiftiness, and aren't afraid of contact. Both have the patience to let their blocks develop and follow them well. Stephen Davis selected in the 4th in 1996. That might translate today to the 7th or even an UDFA. Gaffney of course drafted in the 6th.
  23. Sometimes it takes some digging to find the motivation behind draft picks. Sometimes it is completely obvious. The Carolina Panthers selection of Trai Turner in the 3rd round of the NFL Draft is a no brainer. One of the biggest flaws of the Panthers offense last season was a lack of push at the point of contact. The offensive line struggled all season to move the chains on short distances. Hampered by injuries and mediocre offensive guard talent at best, they failed to move the chains in the running game. So when Trai Turner, who Mel Kiper labeled as one of the best under the radar players in the draft, was still available in the third round for the Panthers the selection was possibly the easiest of the draft so far. Turner has work to do and much to learn, but at a hog mollyish 6'3 and 310lbs he can do one thing for the Panthers immediately. He can pave the road for Williams and Stewart. While Turner struggled at times at LSU in pass protection, he excelled in run blocking. Scouts praise his ability to get push off the line and finish his blocks with the defenders on the ground. He also showed the ability to find linebackers after his first blocks are finished, something the guards last season were rarely able to accomplish. The result could be more reliable 4-5 yard runs and sustained drives. You would be hard pressed to find anyone that watched the Panthers play last year that would disagree with this pick. He could very well start immediately, which is a rare find in the third round.
  24. I had a feeling the Panthers would be going defense with their second round pick, but I was thinking cornerback. Instead, the Panthers draft a defensive end which is probably one of the areas least in need, until you scratch the surface. How did the guy that many labeled as the second best defensive end in the draft fall to the Panthers in round 2? Why would the Panthers select him? Well, it is fairly simple. It begins with "unnamed NFL scouts" who questioned his attitude. . Con man... Con man... seems like I have heard that somewhere before. Oh, that's right, Cam Newton was called a con artist before the NFL draft as well. Remind me how that turned out for the Panthers. When it comes to such strong terminology against a player, it is obviously personal. And when scouts leave the business mindset and get personal, it is time to ignore them. Clearly Gettleman saw past the rhetoric. But is defensive end a need for the Panthers? Obviously, David Gettleman thinks so. This pick could be the biggest indicator yet on how long term contract talks are going with Greg Hardy. If Hardy is no longer with the Panthers next season, which is looking more and more likely, Ealy could possibly step in with solid production. In Carolina, Ealy has the best case scenario. He does not have to come in and be the number one guy. He doesn't even need to be the number two guy. He can come in and learn from one of the best defensive line coaches in the game, Eric Washington. Washington has proven he can get production out of just about any defensive marginal talent given to him. I would expect big returns from a physical talent like Kony Ealy. A realistic projection this season for Ealy would be as a situational pass rusher and in the rotation to spell Hardy and Johnson. While I would have preferred a starter in round 2, I really cannot fault Gettleman for looking to the future here and taking not only the best player available, but also a position of need.
  25. Strengths: Good pass-rusher Fast, quick Capable of taking games over Can be dominant Plays with good pad level Good feet Quick get-off Good use of hands Repertoire of moves Able to use hands and feet at same time Has the ability to shed blocks Can beat double-teams Plays with good strength Athletic Can be extremely disruptive Splash plays Instinctive Capable run-defender
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