Did Sean McDermott Foil Carolina's NFL Draft, Twice?

Did Sean McDermott Foil Carolina's NFL Draft, Twice?

The Buffalo Bills traded up in both the 2nd and 3rd rounds, just the ahead of the Panthers. In both of these rounds, the selected players that the Panthers had met and of positions that Carolina addressed in that same round.

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The Carolina Panthers 2017 Schedule Is Finally Here.

It's taken forever, but we can all finally start making arrangements for those must-make games for the 2017 season. We personally suggest you joining your nearest Roaring Riot Chapter and tagging along with them this season. This via Panthers.com

 

October consists of four out of five games on the road and December has three out of four at home. The good news is the Panthers have a better chance closing out the season strong in December. The bad news is October could be tough.

Panthers will end the season on the road against a NFC South opponent again, only this time they will heading to Atlanta instead of Tampa.

Written By Tripp Morgan

Follow @TrippMorgan6 and @Cat_Chronicles for the latest news and updates surrounding the Carolina Panthers.

Article Thumbnail Photo by Jesse Fraetis.

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Carolina Panthers Bring In Top WR Prospect Zay Jones For Visit.

I reported back in March that the Panthers staff, including wide receivers coach Lance Taylor, had a private workout with Jones at ECU.

"The Panthers are showing great interest," Jones said back in March. "I had the opportunity to work out for them and hopefully hear good things from them. But other than that, I'm just going to keep doing what I do best, go out here on this Pro Day, perform well, and we'll see where it goes from there."

It has now been reported from Hoist The Colours  and 247Sports Panthers writer Stephen Igoe that Jones has now been confirmed as one of the Panthers top 30 visits.

Jones was already reported having visits with the Titans and Panthers NFC South rival Tampa Bay.

Jones is added to the Panthers list of wide receiver visits along with  Fred Ross of Miss. St. Kendrick Bourne, and Malachi Dupre of LSU. The Steelers have also shown interest in Jones as ECU heach coach Scottie Montgomery used to be the wide receivers coach with the Steelers. Montgomery was also a rookire free agent with the Panthers in 2000.

Jones broke the NCAA single season record with 158 receptions last season. Many analyst have him going towards the end of round one and early round two. If he were to somehow fall to 40, the Panthers could certainly look to scoop him up in hopes to get more production in that slot position. Jones can play out wide and in the slot, which makes him even more intriguing to NFL teams.

 

Written By Tripp Morgan

Follow @TrippMorgan6 and Cat_Chronicles for the latest news and updates around the Carolina Panthers.

Do These Prospect Visits Show Carolina Panthers Want To "Evolve?"

One word has summed up the Carolina Panthers off-season for fans, media, and analysts alike... "EVOLVE." Ever since Rivera muttered the phrase in regards to the offense at the end of the season, the outside world has been trying to figure it out. As we have gotten closer to the draft, we may be getting a pretty good idea judging by a few of the prospect visits the Panthers have brought in.

Each season NFL teams are allotted 30 draft prospects to bring in for visits and/or workouts at the team facilities. In most cases, in the Panthers case anyway, these are the players you can start getting the best judge of interest in. There have been three particular players the Panthers have shown interest in that fit roughly the same mold and could help "evolve" this offense and give Cam Newton another weapon. They are RB/WR Christian McCaffrey, RB/WR Curtis Samuel, and RB Alvin Kamara.

In a year where Jonathan Stewart is turning 30 and has battled injuries, seeing Dave Gettleman and Ron Rivera hosting running back prospects isn't surprising. But each of these running backs offer something new to the Panthers offense, and that's the ability to line up outside or in the slot at receiver.

Having a running back with the ability to line up as a receiver can create all kinds of mismatches for opposing defenses. Many question whether offensive coordinator Mike Shula can properly use a player like this, but who really knows as the most versatile player he has had with Carolina was Ted Ginn, who now resides with NFC SOuth rival New Orleans. Between Shula and Cam Newton, Ginn has had the best years of his career in Charlotte. During the 2015 season Shula constantly used Ginn's speed to create mismatches. Like the one here (fast forward to 1:55) where a linebacker was covering Ginn. Good times.

With Ginn in the slot and the Falcons sending a blitzing safety from the left, it left Ginn matched up alone with the linebacker. There was one safety left up top, but Ginn is the only receiver on the three wide set who crosses field, leaving the safety in no man's land with two other receivers to his right. As soon as Newton realizes the safety doesn't adjust, he lofts it up downfield for Ginn to use his speed to go get it. 

Now, I'm not comparing Ginn to prospects like McCaffrey, just simply showing what the use of proper mismatches with players who create separation can do. The hottest name surrounding the Panthers draft right now, Christian McCaffrey, has been a master of this in college. You can look up highlights all day, but here's one where he runs a route out of the back field and breaks a linebacker down one-on-one and takes it all the way after finding the seam.

Alvin Kamara shot up teams boards after posting explosive combine numbers. His versatility in both the running and receiving game is what helped land him at Tennessee. That along with his combine performance is what will help him in the NFL as well. 

This isn't the big play like McCaffrey's above, but it's a good example of the mismatch caused by the running back motioning out of the backfield. Tennessee scored twice in this game on this exact same play. You'll notice two defenders on one receiver near the back of the end zone leaving Kamara wide open. 

Chances are you saw Curtis Samuel of Ohio State play at some point last season. He dominated the final drive in double overtime that propelled the Buckeyes over arch rival Michigan.

Another play where the linebacker matches up with the running back coming out of the back field. The quarterback slightly under-throws the pass here causing a contested catch that Samuel still comes down with. A little more on the pass and it's an easy touchdown catch.

The Panthers have visited with all of these running backs along with Leonard Fournette, who is another hot name associated with the Panthers. These takes here are not a spite to Fournette and his game. I still like Fournette and think he can be successful in the NFL. I also believe he has better hands than many anticipate, but the Panthers need versatility if they are going to truly "evolve" the offense. Having another power running back wouldn't really do that. 

With that said, it's also entirely possible Carolina brought in the likes of Curtis Samuel and Alvin Kamara in case they chose not to go McCaffrey at eight. It seems pretty evident the Panthers like Fournette just as much as they do McCaffrey and if he falls to eight, we could see them take him and get either Samuel or Kamara later. They could also go defense at eight if a guy they really like is still there and get one of the two later. The only problem with that is McCaffrey is much more polished in running, receiving, and returning than the other two. Not to mention you are then tying up two draft picks on running backs.

When it all boils down to it, we can only guess what Rivera meant by "evolve." Hell, Gettleman said in his post season presser that it wasn't really the proper term to use, so who knows? Nobody but the people in the front office really know what direction they want to go a week out from the draft. Even they probably still don't know. It could all come down to who falls and who doesn't. 

Written By Tripp Morgan

Follow @TrippMorgan6 and @Cat_Chronicles for the latest news and updates on the Carolina Panthers.

Article thumbnail photo by Jesse Fraetis. 

 

Making a Case for Corey Davis at #8

Making a Case for Corey Davis at #8

I have to admit that I’m pretty late getting on the Corey Davis hype train, but I have been watching some of his tape lately and thinking about what taking a WR this high means not only for the rest of this draft but for the Panthers going forward. Corey Davis, for those who don't know, is a 6'3" 212 lbs. WR from Western Michigan who accrued 97 rec for 1500 yds. and 19 TDs in his senior season and totaled 332 rec for 5285 yds. and 52 TDs over his collegiate

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Experts Everywhere Are Torn On The Carolina Panthers First Round Pick.

Just before the combine it seemed every analyst knew where the Panthers were going at pick eight, that was with LSU RB Leonard Fournette. Since the combine and free agency has taken place, there has been a lot of shifting gears (as there is nearly every year) as to where they think Carolina will go with high first round pick. Here are the latest pics we've seen.

CBS SPORTS- DE JONATHAN ALLEN- ALABAMA

 

SB NATION- RB LEONARD FOURNETTE- LSU

WALTER FOOTBALL- DE DEREK BARNETT- TENNESSEE

BLEACHER REPORT- CB MARSHON LATTIMORE- OHIO STATE

ROTOWORLD, JOSH NORRIS- WR COREY DAVIS- WESTERN MICHIGAN

Some other picks include Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com with RB Leonard Fournette, Pro Football Focus' Steve Palazzolo with WR Mike Williams, and Sporting News with TE OJ Howard out of Alabama. 

As you can see the general consensus has changed right much since the combine and mainly free agency. Two of my favorite picks right now on this list are O.J. Howard and Corey Davis. Both could be an immediate impact on offense and are certainly possible at number eight. Howard could be a great complement and future replacement for Greg Olsen, while Davis could be an explosive, play making wide receiver the Panthers missed in '16 and elevate the passing game to a new level along with Kelvin Benjamin. 

Written By Tripp Morgan

Follow @TrippMorgan6 and @Cat_Chronicles for news and updates surrounding the Carolina Panthers.

Article thumbnail photo by Jesse Fraetis.

Video: C3 One-On-One With ECU WR Zay Jones

Video: C3 One-On-One With ECU WR Zay Jones

I was able to sit down with ECU star receiver Zay Jones before his autograph signing at Sup Dogs in Greenville, NC benefiting the Aces For Autism Foundation. I asked him a few quick questions about his recent experiences and confirmed the private workout he had earlier this week at ECU with Carolina Panthers coaches.

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Panthers are set for Fournette

Panthers are set for Fournette

By now, every free agent acquisition the Panthers have made this year has been already posted about whether on here, facebook, twitter, or dozens of other sites. I'm here to look at the bigger picture going forward and what all these signings mean for the draft.

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