When college football fans think of elite prospects, Northwestern won't make any top ten lists of programs where those particular players would come from, and for good reason. The Wildcats aren't exactly known as a football factory, but they do have a few prospects coming out in this year's draft that could find themselves being seriously considered by the Carolina Panthers in the latter rounds of the 2012 draft . Let's jump right in, shall we?
Our first prospect is none other than free safety, Brian Peters, who I believe the Panthers should strongly consider if he happens to fall to the 5th round. For a man his size(6' 3", 215 lbs), he was able to put up some very impressive numbers. Namely, a 4.6 forty and a 6.69 three cone drill, the last of which would have been tied for second best at the combine. This drill measures how well a prospect can change directions at high speeds, a necessity at the next level. Personally, if he is available at our pick in the 5th round, he'd be on my short list of prospects to draft at that point. Join me after the jump to take a look at the other two prospects from the Northwestern pro day who I believe should get some consideration from the Panthers.
Next up is wide receiver, Jeremy Ebert, who was able to turn some heads at Northwestern's pro day by running a 4.38 forty, and bench pressing 225 lbs 16 times. It is important to note that his forty would have been good enough for second best had he been invited to the combine. Ebert projects very well as a slot receiver at the next level, and you can see this clearly in his highlight videos. He actually has a chance to sneak into the 4th round, but I suspect he could be had in a later round.
Lastly, I'd like to take a look at New Mexico's ILB, Carmen Messina(6' 1" 236 lbs). I'm including him in this report simply because he is from the Chicago area and decided to participate in Northwestern's pro day for more exposure(an assumption). Several things stand out when you examine Messina a bit. Not only is he highly intelligent and instinctual, but he is also a fundamentally sound when wrapping up the opposition. With these type of abilities, it should come as no surprise that he led the nation in tackles his sophomore year. I believe his speed is the only thing that will hold him back from being a first day pick. I believe the Panthers should consider him in the seventh round.
FS Brian Peters
WR Jeremy Ebert