I have looked at game film from a few prospects for this years draft and I have found a few players that just jumped off of the screen. A few of these are who you would expect but a few others haven't received a lot of attention here.
Star Lotulelei: This man is ridiculous. On almost every play he resets the line of scrimmage at least 2 to 3 yards. He seems to have a good motor in pursuit and plays with reckless abandon. This is the type of player that could transform the panthers defense into a very elite unit. One thing that may have him fall just a bit is that he doesn't seem to have very good instincts at this point. He will sometimes blow up his man just to have the ball carrier run right by him.
Chance Warmack: This is a popular pick here on CSR and for good reason. He always seems to be in good position. In the run game he routinely drives his man off of the ball and is athletic when asked to pull or block down field. In pass protection he is very solid and does not get driven back hardly at all by even the best bull rushers. This guy could allow Cam to step up in the pocket to make a throw instead of running for his life first. The only negative I see on tape is that his jersey is always above his gut and just looks funny.
Eric Fisher: This is a big man that can really move. By watching film I believe that in time he may be better than the consensus top tackle in this draft Luke Joeckel. He has a better anchor and near the same level of athleticism. He also gets more movement on his man in the run game which is something that Joeckel just doesn't do on a consistent basis. He would allow us to cut Jordan Gross and shore up a lot of cap space. I am a big fan of gross but I think that he may be gone with how much cap room we can save by cutting him. The only downside that I see is that he is still a little raw in his technique and it may take some time for him to reach his potential.
Tavon Austin: If Steve Smith ever had a clone it could possibly be Tavon Austin. On film he jumps off the field with his speed and elusiveness. The one thing that really surprised me is that he really runs with some power for his size routinely getting yards after contact. This guy is an explosive play waiting to happen. He would give the panthers a young threat that could truly take the top of the defense. The major concern with Austin is his size and if he can remain healthy through a full NFL season.
Cordarelle Patterson. Imagine a more raw Julio Jones with more elusiveness. This kid was a junior college transfer and Tennessee was dreaming up ways to get him the ball. He has the speed and elusiveness to take it to the house on every play. He would take some time for the panthers to develop but has the potential to be an all pro wide out. The big concern with Patterson is that he is raw, very raw. He needs some serious development in route running and the nuances of the position.
Larry Warford: This is a mammoth of a man and an absolute beast in run blocking. I think that he is the most powerful guard in this draft. He always seems to drive his man 3 to 4 yards down the field. He is also good in pass protection. Once he gets his hands on his man it is over. He has great strength at the point of attack. He would be a good fit for the Panthers at the right guard position. There is a reason why he won't be a first round pick though. He may be a little slow footed and is exposed when he has to block in space lunging instead of blocking.
There a few players that many people that read this article may think that I have overlooked but I have reasons for that. There is something on tape that throws up a red flag and here are a few examples.
Jesse Williams: A fan favorite here. While strong at the point of attack he is very slow footed and is a two down player.
Jonathan Hankins: He moves the line of scrimmage but I don't see any closing speed.
Sheldon Richerdson: He looks like a defensive end and run blocks like one too.
Keenan Allen: Makes the tough catches but doesn't get a lot of separation. If he can't get separation from college corners he is going to really struggle in the pros in my opinion.
Lane Johnson: His foot speed is a definite question. I think he will really struggle with speed rushers.
All of this is based on my personal evaluation and is just my humble opinion. However I would love to hear what the rest of CSR thinks about these prospects and my evaluation skills. You never know maybe Dave Gettleman needs an assistant. LOL