In my previous mock draft, I shared with all of you who I believe the Panthers are going select with their alloted picks in the draft. Well, this time I've decided that I'm going to share with all of you what I want the Panthers to do with their draft selections. Some of the picks will be the same as in my first draft, but most of them will be in the later rounds where there's really not much to choose from based on the chart that I am using. (And yes, there will be a homer pick. There will also be a few surprises, but we'll get to that later.)
In my first draft I assumed there would be no trades, but this time I'm going to assume that trades can be made (primarily because I desperately want the Panthers to trade out of the pick). With this mock draft, I'm basing my picks off Nolan Nawrocki's updated value chart from Pro Football Weekly.
Once again, please do not let this mock draft incite anger if I don't want the Panthers to pick the same players that you want them to pick. We're all Panthers fans here, so let's keep the discussion civil and avoid in-fighting about the draft prospects.
So, without further ado, here's version 2.0 of my mock draft. After the jump...
Round 1, #1 overall:
TRADE!!! The Carolina Panthers sell the idea of drafting Cam Newton and trade the #1 overall pick to the Buffalo Bills for the #3 overall pick, the #34 overall pick, and the #68 overall pick.
Round 1, #3 overall:
TRADE!!! The Carolina Panthers sell the idea of drafting Blaine Gabbert and take advantage of another one of the QB desperate teams in the top of the draft by trading the #3 overall pick to the Arizona Cardinals for the #5 overall pick and the #38 overall pick.
Round 1, #5 overall:
Patrick Peterson -- CB, LSU
We need to build a dominating defense (They do win championships, you know?), and even though Dareus is my preferred player, he will be gone by the time the 5th pick rolls around. And if I'm being honest, I'd rather have PP7 and the extra 3 picks than Dareus. We all know what PP7 brings to the table, and he will instantly upgrade the secondary alongside Chris Gamble and will allow our pass rush to be that much more effective by taking the opposing receivers out of the game while giving the front seven more time to get to the opposing quarterback.
Round 2, #34 overall (from Buffalo):
Phil Taylor -- DT, Baylor
We need a stud DT, and Taylor fits the bill perfectly. He is an excellent selection at #34 overall, and will immediately make a positive impact on the defense by creating space for the defensive ends to get to the quarterback.
Round 2, #38 overall (from Arizona):
Jonathan Baldwin -- WR, Pittsburgh
Baldwin is a big target who will line up nicely on the outside with David Gettis and give the QB (whomever that may be) another large target to stretch the field.
Round 3, #65 overall:
Colin Kaepernick -- QB, Nevada
The shocker pick! I like Kaepernick as a prospect, and if we're going to sign a veteran and sit a quarterback for 1-2 years, I'd like to draft Kaepernick and let him learn from a quality veteran while he works on his mechanics and refines his game to take over as the future franchise quarterback in 2012 or 2013.
Round 3, #68 overall (from Buffalo):
Taiwan Jones -- RB, Eastern Washington
With the strong possibility that DeAngelo Williams will leave Carolina via free agency, the Panthers might as well find a potential replacement for him as soon as they can. Jones is a speedy back with great pass-catching ability out of the backfield, and can contribute to the offense immediately upon arrival.
Round 3, #97 overall:
Kenrick Ellis -- DT, Hampton
I've made it no secret that I love the big fat fatty from Hampton. He upgrades the interior of the defensive line, and allows the rest of his linemates the freedom to get to the quarterback.
Round 4, #98 overall:
John Moffitt -- OL, Wisconsin
The Panthers have a major need for OL depth, so why not take some value in the 4th round and pickup Moffitt to add depth to a position where we desperately needed it last year? Moffitt could end up being a draft steal if he's still available in the 4th round as he will probably compete for a starting spot in 2011.
Round 5, #132 overall:
DJ Williams -- TE, Arkansas
Since Kyle Rudolph will most likely go in the 2nd round, and the Panthers will (hopefully) focus on other positions with the acquired picks from their trades, they will have to look elsewhere if they want to get a TE in this year's draft. That's where DJ Williams comes into the equation. The former Arkansas TE could end up being the Panthers' TE of the future after taking a year to learn from veteran Jeremy Shockey, which would prepare him to take over as the go-to TE in 2012.
Round 6, #166 overall:
Jerell Powe -- DT, Ole Miss
This pick fills out the depth on the defensive line and adds another big fat fatty to the rotation. A great value at the bottom of the 6th round who could end up being another draft steal, just like his former defensive linemate from Ole Miss, Greg Hardy.
Round 6, #203 overall:
Charles Clay -- FB, Tulsa
Clay is an interesting player because it's not quite known what position he's going to play at the next level. Is he a FB, or a TE? I'd like to take a late-6th round flier out on him and see what he can do in the NFL.
Round 7, #244 overall:
Chris Culliver -- CB, South Carolina
This is a homer pick, I'm not going to lie. We could always use secondary depth, and Culliver would be a good addition, especially if he can be had in the 7th round. Even though Nawrocki grades him as a 6th round pick, I think he'll slide to the 7th round.
Well, there you have it folks. This is my preferred draft for the Panthers in 2011, assuming they are able to sell the Bills and Cardinals on Cam Newton and Blaine Gabbert and take advantage of their desperation for the two quarterbacks by allowing them to trade up with us while we stockpile 2nd and 3rd round picks to add more quality players for Rivera and staff to dominate with. (For the record, I don't think there will be any trades, but a guy can hope, can't he?)
Like I said in my first mock draft, feel free to discuss this mock draft amongst yourselves in the comment thread, but please don't let this turn into another quarterback deathmatch that accomplishes nothing but hurt feelings and bruised egos.