As the NFL Combine came to a close the National Football Post updated their big board with a few obvious choices, and several surprises. For the purpose of the article I'm focusing solely op the top 15 players according to the NFP, I'll leave it up to you to head over and take a look at the entire list yourself.
In order to understand these rankings let me give you a basic breakdown of their grading system. The entire grading scale is very in depth, and can be found here- however for the purposed of brevity here's the basic idea:
9.0 Instant Starter/Star
8.5 Future premier player
8.0 1st game starter, featured part of team
7.5 1st year starter, featured part of team
7.0 Solid NFL player with no real weaknesses
Here are their top 5:
1. Andrew Luck- 9.0
2. Morris Claiborne- 8.5
3. Trent Richardson- 8.5
4. David DeCastro- 8.5
5. Michael Brockers- 8.0
More after the jump
In the top 5 it's Michael Brockers who really jumps out at me. Despite having a poor combine showing they still believe he's a day one starter and future premier player. Also wholly attainable at the Panthers' pick- David DeCastro, who is as reliable as any pick in the draft despite playing a position that lacks impact.
Noticably absent: Matt Kalil. I'll admit, I'm a huge Kalil fan so this really shocked me. Let's see what happens in the next 5.
6. Matt Kalil- 8.0
7. Robert Griffin III- 7.5
8. Quinton Coples- 7.5
9. Justin Blackmon- 7.5
10. Devon Still- 7.5
Still's name has gotten lost in the shuffle during the combine. I'm not a huge fan, but he does have a strong body of work. My problem is that I'm not sure Still has much room to improve as an NFL player. Furthermore, the NFP have the Panthers selecting Devon Still 9th overall, so he will be someone to watch closely.
11. Kendall Wright- 7.5
12. Cordy Glenn- 7.5
13. Orson Charles- 7.5
14. Alamedu Ta'amu- 7.5
15. Mark Barron- 7.0
That's three DTs in the top 15, and the first appearance of a safety. Their rankings fall in step with what I see out of this draft class- after the top 8 you start to hit a middling ground where all the players are fairly even until you get to around pick 20.
I really hope the Panthers find a way to trade back. I would be absolutely fine with moving back a few spots and grabbing a player like Mark Barron or Cordy Glenn while adding another 2nd round pick. It's Barron who I really want to watch closely out of this next group. Ron Rivera likes his safeties, and if he likes what he sees out of Barron I wouldn't be surprised if he's the Panthers pick.
What do you think Panthers fans? Anything really surprise you about these rankings, or grades?