Carolina Panthers: Best Player Available, Need, or Both?


The Carolina Panthers go into the draft with several positions that could be considered needs. However they have signed enough free agents to give some flexibility to their drafting. Will the Panthers take the best player available or will they fill needs? Can they do both?

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If we look at the players that the Panthers had visits and workouts with, then we can see the Panthers preparing for several eventualities. They talked to two first round grade tackles, Ereck Flowers and DJ Humphries. So they could go that way.

Landon Collins, Kevin Johnson, and Trae Waynes are three defensive back options that could be there depending on how the draft goes.

Then there are the two running backs Todd Gurley and Melvin Gordon. These players are increasingly rising in the draft order. The likelihood of one or both surviving the first twenty picks of the draft is unlikely. Would the Panthers consider taking one of these two if they are available?

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  • One only has to go back to 2008. The Panthers had DeAngelo Williams, who was playing well as the primary running back. That did not stop them from taking Jonathan Stewart in the first round and pairing him with Williams. So the Panthers could very well pair Gordon or Gurley with Stewart at little to no trouble.

    So the Panthers are targeting a number of players and one of them is bound to be available at the twenty-fifth pick. As long as that player is a defensive back, offensive tackle, or wide receiver then that player will clearly be a need. If it is a running back, then the pick is more clearly the best player available.

    The Panthers’ strategy tomorrow night will be an opportunistic one. They have plenty of options and they shouldn’t make a choice that defies total logic. Right???

    Next: Carolina Panthers Like Drafting in the Twenties