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May 05, 2014

Panthers get Davante Adams in L.A. Times mock draft

Offensive tackle and wide receiver are arguably the two deepest positions in this week's draft, and that depth was tested in the Los Angeles Times' mock draft with beat writers from around the league.

By the time the Panthers were up at No. 28 in the Times' mock, four tackles and six receivers were off the board.

The four tackles taken at that point were the first four expected to be picked Thursday: Jake Matthews (St. Louis at No. 2), Greg Robinson (Atlanta, 6), Taylor Lewan (Giants, 12) and Zack Martin (Dallas 16), who also can play guard.

There was a run on receivers just before the Panthers were on the clock.

The first six receivers to go were Sammy Watkins (Jacksonville, 3), Mike Evans (Tampa Bay, 7), Odell Beckham (Jets, 18), Brandin Cooks (Cincinnati, 24), Kelvin Benjamin (Cleveland, 26) and Marqise Lee (New Orleans, 27).

So with the 28th pick of the 2014 NFL Draft, the Panthers selected Fresno State WR Davante Adams.

I considered a few other players before taking Adams, who led the country in receiving last season and twice has worked out for the Panthers.

Carolina's scouts and coaches seem to like TCU cornerback Jason Verrett, who looks like a younger version of Captain Munnerlyn and could step right into the role(s) vacated by Munnerlyn.

Indiana WR Cody Latimer (6-3, 215) is a big wideout who has been climbing draft boards since running the 40 in 4.39 and 4.43 seconds at his pro day.

And some analysts have had the Panthers taking Nevada offensive lineman Joel Bitonio. But Bitonio (6-4, 302) is not real long and may not be the long-term answer for a team looking for a left tackle.

Adams has good size at 6-1 and 212, but doesn't have blazing speed after running the 40 in 4.56 seconds at the combine.

But Adams put up some big numbers playing with Derek Carr in Fresno State.

And that may be the biggest question for the Panthers on Adams -- and the reason they worked him out a second time: Can he run all the routes after playing in the spread offense (for only two years) at Fresno?

Panthers GM Dave Gettleman expressed concern last week about receivers who had not run the full, nine-pattern route tree in college.

There are certainly receivers the Panthers value more than Adams. Gettleman said last week he has a total of 10 tackles and wideouts with first-round grades, but declined to give a breakdown.

But the way the Times' mock unfolded, I went with Adams.

If things fall differently in the Pro Football Writers of America mock taking place today, I might go in a different direction.

And picking so late in the first round Thursday night, the Panthers also will have to be fluid.

--Joseph Person

Posted by Observer Sports on May 5, 2014 at 09:04 AM | Permalink


If Varrett reminds Gettleman of Capt, why would we select him in the first? Please tell me this is pre-draft jibberish!

Posted by: DraftDay | May 5, 2014 10:05:34 AM

First round = immediate starter and help to an obvious area of need...or should. If he already reminds DG of Captain (who was a decent pro with a few years experience) as a rookie in the draft, then just imagine what he could be in 2-3 years. Decent as a rookie with that front 7 will be fine and maybe a shutdown corner beast in a year or two? IDK, just thinking out loud. I still like the WR or OL in the first round.

Posted by: YeahRight | May 5, 2014 10:28:24 AM

Immediate starter in the nickle is different from an every down starter with shutdown talent. Plus, Im just tired of seeing the Capt's trying to win a jump ball pass against a 6'4+ WR. They look like a drowning victim scrambling to the surface. Id be good with anybody but Varrett. That is all.

Posted by: DraftDay | May 5, 2014 10:45:17 AM

I would love to get Benjamin out of FSU. Big WR with huge upside and can be a "steal" with where he is picked

Posted by: Realpanthersfan | May 5, 2014 10:55:52 AM

TRADE UP!! The Panthers are a playoff team now and need to fill a few holes with starters. Package middle picks and future picks to move up in each of the first three rounds for best available at WR, T, and CB.

If they move to the middle of the first round they'll have a chance at a top tier CB or T or their choice of WR (after Watkins and Evans). If they wait to see what falls they may be left to settle for players projected as second picks Varrett, Moses, and a slew of wideouts.

Posted by: Jon C. | May 5, 2014 11:22:48 AM

Release the Kraken!!!

Posted by: The Kraken | May 5, 2014 11:35:00 AM

Panthers fans, these are the players that you should watch on youtube. These guys are better than the predicted top 5 WRs other than Sammy Watkins and Mike Evans. Paul Richardson, Dovante Adams, Donte Montcrief, Dri Archer (Slot WR).. I'm really high on Dovante Adams. I think he will be Cam's main man. Dude is a vacuum.

Posted by: Steve | May 5, 2014 11:41:13 AM

hopefully Gettleman does not channel his inner-Hurney and take Verrett in the first.
the second coming of Captain is not a good thing. he had 1 good year, 1 decent, and the rest were pretty bad.
that's not what you want in your 1st rd pick.

Posted by: Larry | May 5, 2014 12:45:58 PM

You're smoking some good stuff if you really believe those guys are better than Sammy Watkins or Mike Evans .. and I'm a gamecock fan.

Posted by: Nat Turner | May 5, 2014 12:52:12 PM

All the mocks have Odell going to the Jets but remember when the Jets did us a solid and passed on Star for another DT last year? Hopefully, Ryan repeats last years gift.

Posted by: DraftDay | May 5, 2014 1:50:33 PM

Joe, I guess you need to tell us if this is your prognostication of what Gettlemen will do or what you would do in that situation. Because I don't think it can represent what Gettleman would do. If Gettleman says there are 10 WR and OT on his board that have 1st round grades why in the world do you think he'd draft a WR? The 10 guys are probably gone in that group, definately receiver. You could get Adam's talent in the 2nd round with the depth that is there. I guarantee you if those two groups are exhausted by 28 he is hoping Bridgewater has fallen and he can trade out or he is drafting best available on D. However, I think you completely ignored a guy that gives you options at RT, Morgan Moses. You get him you can evaluate who you want at LT, Bell or Moses depending on how training camp goes.

Posted by: Anon | May 5, 2014 6:06:50 PM

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