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  1. Matt Miller (formerly of Bleacher Report) has a new site which was free today but will soon be paid for so I thought I'd snag the Panthers picks. Worth noting no trades were allowed and no compensatory picks until they are announced- Panthers don't have a 7th this year. H e also states this: 8. Carolina Panthers — Team Needs: Tier 1 QB, OT, CB | Tier 2 LB, TE, IDL | Tier 3 IOL, EDGE, RB The Pick: QB JUSTIN FIELDS, OHIO STATE Analysis: The trade of Matthew Stafford to the Los Angeles Rams that netted the Detroit Lions Jared Goff changed up the quarterback market not just for veterans, but also for incoming rookies. Because of needs at the position and due to a mock draft with no trades, Justin Fields is available at No. 8 overall and the Carolina Panthers—a team that was aggressive in trying to add Stafford—land a passer who in most years would rank as QB1. Fields reminds me of Justin Herbert last year. He’s a big-armed thrower, excellent athlete and has loads of upside. But like Herbert, we’ve been hearing about Fields for three seasons now. There is a level of prospect fatigue that sets in for both teams and the media. More time to pick apart a player isn’t always a good thing, and for some it’s pushing Fields down the board. And let’s get this clear—he is not Dwayne Haskins. Fields is a mature leader with a high football IQ. He also has a much stronger arm and is a much better athlete. “Scout the player, not the helmet” is a go-to saying of mine and it holds true with Fields. Now, give offensive coordinator Joe Brady a talent like Fields and the two could be magical. And to further the Herbert narrative, Fields has abilities that weren’t always put on display at Ohio State. Determining what he can do and not simply what was asked of him will be key for evaluators over the next two months, but my line of caution on Fields would be for those watching the tape to not overthink it. 39. Carolina Panthers The Pick: OT James Hudson, Cincinnati Previous Pick: QB 73. Carolina Panthers The Pick: CB Asante Samuel Jr., FSU Previous Picks: QB, OT 104. Carolina Panthers The Pick: TE Hunter Long, Boston College Previous Picks: QB, OT, CB 135. Carolina Panthers The Pick: WR Frank Darby, Arizona State Previous Picks: QB, OT, CB 169. Carolina Panthers The Pick: DL Osa Odighizuwa, UCLA Previous Picks: QB, OT, CB, WR
  2. Ok folks, one week to go. Much has changed in April, and the draft somehow seems to have gotten even more difficult to predict. I can't remember a draft where such question marks remained at picks 10 and below. Picking a single pick per round seems pointless. As such, I have decided to give you my top 2 picks for rounds 1-3, with a few other possibilities thrown in. Round 1 Andrus Peat - OT - Stanford - At 6'7 330 pounds this hog mollie could anchor the offensive line for years to come. This would put two Stanford tackles on the Panthers roster this year. Landon Collins - S - Bama - Hard hitting run stuffing safety that could make Roman Harper expendable. Collins was my original first round mock selection. He fell off due to wide receivers falling to the Panthers. I think he may be there now. Other possibilities: Shaq Thompson, DJ Humphries Round 2 Preston Smith - DE - Miss St - Panthers liked Smith at the Senior Bowl, and we all know Gettleman loves him some defensive ends. Smith has the frame and the motor to develop with Kony Ealy as a couple of solid defensive ends for the next 5 years. Devin Smith - WR - Ohio State - 27 yards per reception. I repeat, 27 yards per reception at Ohio State. Could be a solid #2 for the Panthers. Would be the second best receiver on the roster day 1 of OTA's. Other possibilities: Cedric Ogbuehi, Jake Fisher, Breshad Perriman Round 3 Devin Funchess - TE/WR - Michigan - Has been buzzing on the huddle lately, and for good reason. Many compare him to Kelvin Benjamin. Having Funchess, Benjamin, and Olsen on the field together would create a lot of opportunities against teams with smaller corners. Justin Hardy - WR - East Carolina - Hardy has impressed every team he has met with, including the Panthers. He may have worked himself up to a 3rd round selection. Skilled player that fills a need. It doesn't hurt that he also brings a built in local fan base. Other Possibilities: Duke Johnson, Jacoby Glenn
  3. 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
  4. 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.
  5. Until the NFL announces the 2015 compensatory picks during the NFL owners meeting, I will only be mocking the picks the Panthers have at this point without speculating on how many they may have. Hopefully they can pick up at least an additional fifth rounder. Round 4 Tyler Lockett - WR/PR - Kansas ST The Panthers address their long term punt return issues in the 4th round with this selection. Lockett could be the best punt returner in the draft. He could drop to the late 3rd / early 4th due to concerns over his size. The Panthers may need to trade up to grab him. Good college production and a solid combine performance keeps him from dropping further. Would also compete immediately as a slot receiver. Has quick first steps to get separation. Known as a student of the game with high football IQ. Quality route runner. Would love to see him develop chemistry with Cam Newton. This pick could change should Ginn or another free agent punt returner be signed by the Panthers. Round 5 Lynden Trail - DE - Norfolk St Lynden Trail is a raw NFL project with tremendous upside. Dave Gettleman won't be able to pass up this chance to discover a late round starting defensive end for the Panthers. Gettleman has also shown a willingness to take on projects if the physical upside is there. 6'7 and 270 pounds he has the frame to compete at this level eventually as a defensive end but could contribute immediately on special teams. Look for the Panthers to have him put on ten more pounds through their training regimen. This kid is pure athlete, can also play tight end. Long story short, Gettleman won't be able to stop himself from taking Trail late in the 5th.
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