Blog Entry

Carolina Panthers Draft Preview

Posted on: April 25, 2011 8:00 pm
 
Carolina Panthers 2010 record: 2-14, fourth place NFC South

2011 draft rundown - Eight total picks (round): 1 (1); 65 (3); 97 (3); 98 (4); 132 (5); 166 (6); 203 (7); 244 (7)

Top needs:   

Quarterback: The Panthers finished last passing in 2010, so it doesn't take much to figure out their biggest need this offseason. In fact, even new coach Ron Rivera has come out and said his team's biggest goal is finding a franchise quarterback.

Defensive tackle: The Panthers have an equally pressing need on the other side of the ball at defensive tackle entering this year's NFL draft. Last year, the Panthers rotated Derek Landri, Nick Hayden and Ed Johnson in at the defensive tackle spots. All three might be considered decent role players, but none are exceptional and might not start for many other teams around the league.

Wide receiver: Yes, the Panthers drafted three wide receivers last year, including two in the third round in Brandon LaFell and Armanti Edwards and one in the sixth in David Gettis. But if the team decides to trade unhappy veteran Steve Smith, which is a possibility, they will need to replenish this position with a top-end talent.

Cornerback: Richard Marshall has said he doesn't think he'll be back and fellow starter Chris Gamble (who is owed $6 million) is coming off a poor season in which he was benched.


First-round focus   1st overall -- The Carolina Panthers are widely expected to select quarterback Cam Newton with the top overall pick, but some believe the team is struggling to come to grips with the thought of investing the first pick on a player with only one season of starting experience at the BCS level. It is easy to understand why the Panthers might be tempted by some of the other players in this draft class. Alabama defensive Marcell Dareus, LSU cornerback Patrick Peterson and Georgia wide receiver A.J. Green also play positions of need and are widely viewed as considerably safer prospects. North Carolina defensive end Robert Quinn could prove a Pro Bowl caliber pass rusher -- something the Panthers could use considering their loss last year of free agent Julius Peppers -- and would be a popular selection given his close regional ties, as well. Ultimately, however, the way to improve in the NFL is to improve at the quarterback position. Considering the relative talent of the other quarterbacks in the NFC South division (Atlanta, New Orleans, Tampa Bay), the only way for the Carolina Panthers to realistically get back into contention for the divisional crown, they need improved play at quarterback. Newton is a gamble, but his 51 touchdowns against SEC competition and poise both on and off the field in driving Auburn to the BCS Championship, is the stuff of legend. At this point, it would be an upset if Carolina selected anyone other than Newton with the first pick -- though with no second round selection and holes throughout the roster, they'll be working the phones to the last second in an effort to trade down.

Five names on Panthers' board:   
QB Cam Newton, Auburn
QB Blaine Gabbert, Missouri
DT Marcell Dareus, Alabama
CB Patrick Peterson, LSU
DE Robert Quinn, North Carolina

Comments

Since: Sep 27, 2006
Posted on: April 26, 2011 5:13 pm
 

Carolina Panthers Draft Preview

As a Panthers fan, I compare Cam Newton to Andrew Luck.  Experts say Luck is the best prospect since Peyton M.  I say draft anybody but Cam Newton!  If we draft Cam Newton we will defintely suck because he will be a rookie on a bad team, and then we will have the number one pick again without the ability to draft Luck.  I say sign a veteran or let Jimmy C take hits again and get Luck next year.  Our GM is horrible he traded the number 33 pick this year for Armanti Edwards to play a postion he hadnt played since high school!




Since: Mar 19, 2008
Posted on: April 26, 2011 12:49 pm
 

Carolina Panthers Draft Preview

As a Panthers fan, I know we need a franchise QB, HOWEVER, I have yet to be convinced that ANY of the QBs in this draft will be anything close to that. I hope the Panthers build up the rest of the team and then go for a QB next year when there are at least 2 sure fire prospects with Andrew Luck and Landry Jones. Jones was a beast at OU.

Draft Dareus or Peterson and be done with it. Who knows, with the lockout being ended now at least temporarily, maybe the Panthers can trade Steve Smith for more picks and find a stop gap veteran like Hasselback  to fill in until we get a real franchise QB.




Since: Apr 26, 2011
Posted on: April 26, 2011 12:10 pm
 

Carolina Panthers Draft Preview

The Panthers would be better served to use their first round pick to pick up Kevin Kolb from Philadelphia. This would give them a NFL quarterback with experience and would come at a lesser price. The Panthers could use the extra money to bolster their pass rush game as well as their lagging offensive talent and backfield prescence.  Now that the lock out is over, temporarily, talks with Kolb could proceed and and trade talks and draft positions could be negotiated. I also like Cam Newton and if they go this route it is fine also, but you are looking at 55million plus for a unproven NFL quarterback, look at what impact Jimmy Clauson had, none. Go Panthers.   



Since: Apr 26, 2011
Posted on: April 26, 2011 9:43 am
 

Carolina Panthers Draft Preview

Everyone keeps saying Carolina needs a Quarterback but if they draft a great one, they are still going to have a losing season. Quarterbacks may win Super Bowls but defense gets you to the playoffs. If Carolina could take their pick of all the QBs in the world, they still wouldn't win the Super Bowl this year. I say build a team while they look for the right QB to complete it.




Since: Apr 26, 2011
Posted on: April 26, 2011 9:33 am
 

Carolina Panthers Draft Preview

Maybe not Cam Newton, but the fact remains. Carolina needs a QB and they need him now!!!




Since: Apr 26, 2011
Posted on: April 26, 2011 9:24 am
 

Carolina Panthers Draft Preview

If the Panthers wanted Mike Vick, They could have had the real one, the proven one. They are not going to draft a Mike Vick “wantabe” number one. What everyone is ignoring is that Mike Vick or Cam Newton is not a good fit in Charlotte. This is a conservative town.  Baggage and attitudes don’t play well here. If you don’t believe me, just ask George Shinn and the Hornets.



The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com