Round 1 (Pick 25)
The Carolina Panthers have shown a great deal of interest in the offensive tackle D.J. Humphries, who grew up in the Charlotte area even though he played his college football at the University of Florida. According to NFL.com’s Gil Brandt, Humphries had six visits lined up at the beginning of March and the Panthers were two of them.
I have had Pittsburgh’s T.J. Clemmings as the Panthers selection in the first round. Now while I believe he would be an excellent fit on this Panthers’ offense, the team has yet to schedule any types of private visits or workouts. This is usually not good for a prospect’s chances to be drafted by that team.
Round 2 (Pick 57)
Iowa’s defensive tackle Carl Davis was the pick in the second round for the Panthers in my last mock draft and I see no reason for that to change at this point. On March 15th, I wrote about the Panthers’ schedule visit with Davis on March 25th.
The defensive tackle would seemingly not be a position of need with the team using two high draft picks two years ago on Star Lotulelei and Kawann Short. They also brought back veterans Colin Cole and Dwan Edwards this offseason however the two backups are the two oldest players on the roster. The position could use a player like Davis to eventually replace one of them.
Round 3 (Pick 89)
Pick: Za’Darius Smith, DE (Kentucky)
The Panthers stay on the defensive line in the third round and grab another pass rusher to help alleviate the loss of Greg Hardy. One player will not be able to replace the production Hardy brought to this defense but a combination of last year’s second-round pick Kony Ealy and defensive end Za’Darius Smith would be a step in the right direction.
According to Walter Football, Smith has a workout schedule with the Panthers. The former Kentucky Wildcat had a strong pro day and was “super impressive in both linebacker and defensive line drills, looking smooth and athletic.” This would be a versatile piece the defense could use to rush the quarterback with his hand on the ground at defensive end or standing up at outside linebacker.
Round 4 (Pick 124)
Prior to free agency I had Javorius Allen out of USC as the Panthers’ fourth round selection. Allen’s ability to both run the ball and catch the ball out of the backfield seemed to be the perfect complement to featured running back Jonathan Stewart.
According to this tweet by Joe Garcia, the Panthers certainly have some interest in Allen who had a workout scheduled with the team on March 13th. The trio of Stewart, Allen and Fozzy Whittaker provides the Panthers depth as well as versatility at the running back position.
Round 5 (Pick 161)
The wide receiver out of Duke seemed to have all the tools to be the right fit as a slot receiver on the Panthers’ offense. A poor showing at the Scouting Combine has hurt his draft stock a bit and the signing of Ted Ginn Jr. would seem to eliminate any interest the Panthers may have had.
That is certainly not the case as the team scheduled a workout with Crowder and if the Panthers hope to draft the wide receiver, there may be plenty of competition. The former Blue Devil put together an impressive Pro Day, one that included a 40-yard dash time of 4.39, according to Charlotte Observer’s Jonathan Jones.
Round 5 (Pick 169)
The Panthers get the inside wide receiver with Crowder eight picks earlier and add depth to the position with Montgomery. He was heavily involved in the Cardinals passing attack and accounted for 25% of the team’s receptions and 20% of the team’s receiving yards.
Yahoo! Sports’ Rand Getlin tweeted that Montgomery has multiple pre-draft visits lined up but the Panthers are one of the first two on his list. The additions of Ginn Jr., Crowder and Montgomery would help this position go from one of the shallowest positions to one of the deepest very quickly.
Round 6 (Pick 200)
Last week, I had the Panthers selecting Gibson in this round and the next day Mike Barber of the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported that the Panthers were at Gibson’s pro day and have scheduled a pre-draft visit with him.
This pick would certainly make sense for the Panthers who struggled to find two healthy, effective offensive tackles at times last year. Similar to wide receiver, the front office needed to reload the position and would effective do so with the additions of Michael Oher, Humphries and now Gibson.
Round 6 (Pick 213)
Aside from cornerback Teddy Williams, who has spent the majority of his career as a special team player, the Panthers have not addressed the cornerback position. Josh Norman and Bene Benwikere showed they are more than capable of being starters in this league but defenses in this NFL need to have three quality players at the position to matchup against the pass-happy offenses.
Damain Swann got plenty of experience at the position at the University of Georgia and could step in and compete for that nickelback position as a rookie. Per Jeff Risdon, the Panthers had some interest in Swann and met with him at the East/West Shrine Game back in January.
Round 7 (Pick 242)
Pick: Kyshoen Jarrett, SS (Virginia Tech)
The connection between Jarrett and the Panthers is a little bit of a stretch as there is no direct connection. However, the team did have scouts at the Virginia Tech Pro Day, most likely to see Gibson, but Jarrett also worked out for scouts.
The Panthers could be in the market for a hard-hitting safety like Jarrett and he could have caught their attention. At 5-foot-10, 200 pounds Jarrett wanted to make sure scouts saw that he could move in coverage, according to the article by Mike Barber. However, the Panthers would be more interested in what he did during his college career and that was as a safety who could help stop the run.