The Panthers' Pulse - 1-27

Inside news and notes about the Carolina Panthers. Today's focus: The Senior Bowl and who the Panthers are scouting, (and who they should have scouted).

Today's Pulse is going to focus on observations from the senior bowl from our team in Mobile.

The Panthers showed interest in QBs early in the week. Here are some overviews of some of the players the Panthers showed interest in, and some they SHOULD have shown interest in.

Kevin Kolb/Houston - QB
Monday Practice Notes: Very erratic. Stares down primary targets. Trouble with the out routes. Seems to direct his throws more than just letting them go.
Tuesday Practice Notes: At times he looked like the best quarterback on the field but he tended to aim his passes a little too much at times. Kolb moved around the pocket well and was able to read the defense correctly most of the time. Kolb also didn't look to have that strong of an arm.
Wednesday Practice Notes: He's been pretty consistent with his throws all week and the accuracy has been solid. He throws a pretty good spiral. His footwork was good as was his mobility. Deep throws were an issue.
Thursday Practice Notes: When nothing was there, Kolb showed he would take off out of the pocket and runs well.
Analysis: He had a nice week and was pretty accurate on most of his throws. He clearly doesn't have a strong arm but it's at least average. He helped himself this week.

Chris Leak/Florida - QB

Monday Practice Notes: Throws a nice ball. Very crisp on outs with good zip. Can get the ball downfield, but sprays the ball all over the place. Downfield passes are not accurate.
Tuesday Practice Notes: Out of the three signal callers, Leak was the most efficient during the Tuesday session. For the most part, Leak was accurate and he did a good job of reading the defense. His timing was off a few times with the receivers but that could be because the receivers may not have run the correct route. Leak also did a nice job on his deep throws.
Wednesday Practice Notes: Accuracy continued to be an issue with him and his throws were inconsistent throughout the session. Leak did a good job of moving in the pocket but reading the defense was also an issue.
Thursday Practice Notes: Nice touch on the ball but tended to guide the ball instead of letting it fly.
Analysis: He had a rather non-descript week yet gave scouts more than they expected.

Tyler Palko/Pittsburgh - QB

Monday Practice Notes: He clearly showed that his arm lacks strength and velocity although his passes were accurate for the most part
Tuesday Practice Notes:   He showed a little improvement with his accuracy but his lack of overall arm strength is clearly evident. His footwork was better on the second day and he seemed more comfortable in the offense. Palko still doesn't have an NFL arm and that's been clear from his first throw in the first practice on Monday.
Wednesday Practice Notes: This was clearly his best practice of the week so far. He threw with great accuracy and also improved on his deep throws. His foot work and pocket awareness were also better.

Troy Smith/Ohio State - QB

Monday Practice Notes: He was by far the best quarterback on the field today at the North practice. The ball jumped out of his hand and he was quite accurate. His decision making was also good. Smith helped himself today.
Tuesday Practice Notes: He still was the best quarterback on the field for the second straight day. He showed an overall command of the offense and he was very accurate. Smith clearly was the most polished of the three signal callers on the North squad. The only negatives were he was off a little on some deep throws but his intermediate throws were mostly right on the money.
Wednesday Practice Notes: He was much better in the early portion of practice in non-team specific drills. In one on one drills he was much more accurate. Smith tended to be off on his throws in 11-on-11 drills and had several deflected or picked off.

Brian Leonard/Rutgers - FB

Monday Practice Notes: He clearly will need to put on weight if he's going to fullback at the next level. He ran fairly well during the practice session and was able to find some running room.
Tuesday Practice Notes:   A hybrid running back and fullback, that question mark could hurt him in the draft unless a team feels he can fit their philosophy. Needs to add weight, especially in his upperbody, to be a good blocking fullback. Best with the ball in his hands, can actually move very well for his size. Great awareness without the ball, can pass block well, has natural hands catching the ball, and runs well behind his pads up the middle. Changes direction better than expected. Best system would be as a running fullback or power singleback set.
Wednesday Practice Notes: Used at both lead fullback and running back.
Thursday Practice Notes: He showed to have soft hands in most drills which has been the case most of the week. Leonard, for a player of his size, runs with vision. He still needs to put on 15-20 pounds if he wants to make it at the next level.

Chansi Stuckey/Clemson - WR/KR

Monday Practice Notes: Showed good route running and quickness. Average speed and hands. Too often double clutched on a balls thrown his way.
Tuesday Practice Notes: Runs undisciplined routes. He has quick feet and looks most comfortable working along the sidelines. He fails to create enough separation for his quarterback and drops too many balls even when he does.
Wednesday Practice Notes: Is an undisciplined route runner who is too easily knocked out of his routes at the line of scrimmage. He has very quick feet and the ability to beat cornerbacks both inside and downfield. He drops too many passes and his overall consistency must improve.
Analysis: He can be maddeningly inconsistent with both his routes and his hands. He shows good potential, though, and is most effective working along the sidelines. He shows terrific suddenness and is quick in and out of his routes but fails to sell them well.

Anthony Spencer/Purdue - DL

Monday Practice Notes: Shows an inconsistent effort. Looks more comfortable playing downhill than in space.  More powerful than quick, but wants to use his quickness on the backside of the line.  Once he learns this, he could be a good one this week.
Tuesday Practice Notes: Solid day.  Showed some speed off the edge and was able to set up his moves in pass rushing situations.   Against both the run and pass showed a competency to get off of blocks.
Wednesday Practice Notes:  More of a pass rusher than a run stuffer.  Exhibited the ability to stay skinny in his pass rush as well as major quickness off the edge.  Against the run he will give effort coming off low and getting underneath the pads of taller linemen.

H.B. Blades/Pittsburgh - LB

Monday Practice Notes: He is powerful at the point of attack and shows soft hands in coverage. He is very aggressive, but can be too aggressive and run himself out of plays.
Tuesday Practice Notes: Stout and built strong.  Looked fluid in drills and was around the ball a lot in scrimmage.  Not really quick or explosive for a "smaller" linebacker.
Thursday Practice Notes:   Again- is able to stay on his feet and get to the play but really shows limited speed to the flanks.  Beaten on several occasions to the sidelines on running plays.

Paul Posluszney/Penn State - LB

Monday Practice Notes: He is physical and aggressive with excellent footwork. He never quits on a play but struggles to sift through the garbage inside.
Tuesday Practice Notes: Strong, stout and intelligent but did not show much ability outside the box.  Forced the action up the field and made a lot of plays against the run but really struggled in reverse.  Several times he was beaten by Scott Chandler in scrimmage and could not cover the tight end off the line.
Wednesday Practice Notes: Did a great job against the run today.  On several occasions he over ran blocks by bigger linemen and got to the ball.  Very intelligent as well.  Struggled a bit in pass coverage though not as much as yesterday.

Buster Davis/Florida State - LB

Monday Practice Notes: Very explosive and quick. Covers a lot of area. On one particular play Davis had his helmet knocked clean off, literally popping into the air after contact with Alabama FB LeRon McClain.
Tuesday Practice Notes: Did a terrific job leading the defense today and getting his teammates in proper position.  Plays with a lot of quickness firing up the gaps to penetrate the backfield or immediately getting to the sidelines.  Does get caught up in the trash and can be easily blocked from the action.
Wednesday Practice Notes: Best practice of the week. Very explosive and fast to the action.  Did a great job reading plays and quickly getting to the spot.  Took great angles to the play.

Patrick Willis/Mississippi - LB

Monday Practice Notes: Vocal leader on field. Made sure everyone was in the right spot. Tough in run defense. Looked strong at the point but stiff in coverage and lacked sideline to sideline speed.
Tuesday Practice Notes:  Once again Willis was very stout in run defense and excels in the box.  His change of direction is slow and his hips are stiff.  He has not played like the first rounder everyone has anointed him to be.
Wednesday Practice Notes:  Did not distinguish himself in coverage.  Did more turning and running in coverage than backpedaling.  Lacks skills in pursuit.

Michael Griffin/Texas - DB

Monday Practice Notes: Solid sideline to sideline range. Made a very nice play on Kenny Irons in run defense. Showed good ball skills. Solid day overall.
Tuesday Practice Notes: Does a good job of disguising coverage. He will attack the ball at its highest point, but needs to make more assertive breaks and increase his playing speed if he wants more opportunities to do so. His coverage is solid but he needs to author more big plays.
Wednesday Practice Notes: He?s a physical player who is equally capable against the run and pass. In run defense, he diagnoses plays quickly and is eager to deliver the big hit. In pass defense, he shows good discipline and a nose for the ball, although his quickness leaves something to be desired.

Marcus McCauley/Fresno State - CB

Monday Practice Notes: Is physical at the point of attack and has great leaping ability. He lacks closing speed, can be fooled with double-moves and doesn't always attack the ball at its highest point.

Josh Gattis/Wake Forest - S

Monday Practice Notes: He is a smooth player with the good speed and awareness. Has questionable hands and needs to be more aggressive attacking the ball.
Tuesday Practice Notes: He looks uncomfortable in man coverage and struggles to get a good jam on receivers at the line of scrimmage. He's a leader in the secondary and appears most comfortable patrolling center field.
Wednesday Practice Notes: He is best working in a confined space, in which case he is aggressive in going after the ball. Otherwise, he appears indecisive and is slow in reacting to the ball. He is typically in good position but lacks ball skills and cannot be trusted in man-to-man coverage. 
Tuesday Practice Notes: He does a good job jamming receivers at the line and is great against quick hitters. However, he lacks acceleration and cannot maintain tight coverage for very long. 
Wednesday Practice Notes: Showing the ability to play tight in man coverage. He is very physical at the line of scrimmage and is aggressive in coming forward and attacking underneath routes. He needs to do a better job of getting his head around and looking back for the ball.

Aaron Rouse/Virginia Tech - S

Monday Practice Notes: Shows stiff hips and struggles in coverage.
Tuesday Practice Notes: Needs to diagnose plays quicker; he will bite on double-moves. Has the speed to cover receivers downfield but needs to do a better job of looking back for the football.
Wednesday Practice Notes: Is aggressive in going after the ball and shows good hands in attacking it at its highest point. He diagnoses plays quickly and shows great anticipation. He has terrific closing speed but needs to be more disciplined and play more consistently. 

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