Leading up to the NFL Draft, former Alabama safety Landon Collins was considered one of the top safeties in this class. However only one safety was drafted in the first round (Damarious Randall) and Collins is still looking for a home on Day 2.
Collins has played in 27 games the past two seasons with 173 total tackles, 8.5 sacks and five interceptions. He was a key player down the stretch in 2013, the season the Crimson Tide won the National Championship.
If Collins starts to slide and falls into the middle of the second, it would not be a surprise to see the Panthers try and make a move up in the round to grab the strong safety. A pairing of Collins and Tre Boston would solidify the safety position for a number of seasons.
If the Panthers are looking for a wide receiver who can stretch the field they should look no further than Philly Brown’s former teammate, Devin Smith. The 6-0, 196 pound wide receiver has incredible speed and could be an excellent deep threat for quarterback Cam Newton.
Last season with the Ohio State Buckeyes, he had 33 receptions, 931 yards and 12 touchdowns. He averaged 28 yards per reception and had a reception over 30 yards in 13 out of 15 games. In the final four games of the season he had at least one reception over 44 yards.
For the first time in two years, a running back was drafted in the first round. The running back position is deep this year and the second round could see a number of running backs selected. One of the better running backs left is Indiana’s Tevin Coleman.
Last season, playing on a team with almost a non-existent passing offense, Coleman was able to amass over 2,000 rushing yards. He actually ran for more yards than the team’s two quarterbacks combined (1,666 passing yards) and doubled the touchdown total (seven passing touchdowns, 15 rushing touchdowns by Coleman).
The Carolina Panthers have shown a lot of interest in defensive tackle Carl Davis leading up to the Draft, having him in for a visit. A player like Davis would be an excellent pick to eventually replace veterans Colin Cole or Dwan Edwards in the future.
Dave-Te’ Thomas wrote in his scouting report “Davis is much stronger and physical than he looks, doing a good job when asked to bull rush or take on multiple blockers. He will never generate gaudy statistics, but his presence on the field will allow other linemen to not worry about double team action to make the play.”
Za’Darius Smith is more likely a Round 3 target but would be a great defensive end to add to the team’s current group. However, Smith is not only a pass rusher and has shown a strong ability of playing the run, according to Dave-Te’ Thomas.
“Even though Smith has established himself as a pass rusher, he also displays the ability to be a productive run defender. He has a strong initial burst off the ball and for a taller player he demonstrates the ability to play with good pad level.”