GM: @fantasy_occhs68 –>2 DL, 2 LB, 1 CB, 2 WR, 1 TE –> 8 Picks
1. Carolina (2-14) – @fantasy_occhs68 – Marcell Dareus, DT – Alabama
3.01 Carolina (2-14) – @fantasy_occhs68 – Curtis Marsh, CB – Utah St.
3.33 Carolina (compensatory) – @fantasy_occhs68 – Jerrel Jernigan, WR – Troy
4.01 (098) Carolina : K.J. Wright, OLB – Mississippi St.
5.01 (132) Carolina Panthers: DeAndre Brown, WR – Southern Mississippi
6.01 – 166. Carolina Panthers: Ricky Elmore, DE – Arizona
6.38 – 203. Carolina Panthers(comp): Stephen Skelton, TE – Fordham
7.41 – 244. Carolina Panthers(comp): Jeff Tarpinian, LB – Iowa
Instead of opening the draft with an Icon, the Panthers chose to go with Bama defensive lineman Marcell Dareus, a pick that set the tone for the rest of the draft. Instead of going with big name or flashy prospects, Carolina’s GM quietly addressed the team’s needs with a series of solid selections.
In Dareus, the Panthers get a disruptive force around which Ron Rivera can build a very good defense. His dominance inside could open up playmaking opportunities for other defenders, including some of the rookies added in this draft.
With Richard Marshall a candidate to leave via free agency, the Panthers were smart to add another corner in third round pick Curtis Marsh. As a raw, feisty defensive back, Marsh may not be fully-prepared to contribute immediately, but the team’s lack of depth could press him into showing what he can do.
Similarly, the team addressed the need created if James Anderson leaves in free agency by drafting Mississippi State linebacker KJ Wright. While a bit tight-hipped, Wright is a solid all-around LB who does a great job of using his long arms to keep blockers at bay. He’s also got some pass rush ability, which he showcased as a nickel defensive during his time in Starkville.
In addition to addressing defensive needs, the Panthers got a good third round slot guy in Troy receiver Jerrel Jernigan. The small but explosive wideout should be everything Armanti Edwards was supposed to be, joining LaFell and Gettis to become the team’s three young promising receivers. Fifth round pick DeAndre Brown may have a chance to join that group as well, though he’s much more likely destined for a year on the practice squad.
Graded by Aaron Aloysius – @AaronAloysius