2013 NFL mock draft: Jaxon picks for the Panthers


SB Nation's blogger mock continues, and with Carolina on the clock the pick is in.

Each year SB Nation holds their blogger mock draft. It's an event no other outlet can boast because of the breadth of information the team bloggers possess. Instead of one person picking for 32 teams, and looking at their needs, you have dozens of passionate, informed fans who are trying to get the best possible player for their team. Looking at how the board shaped up, I think Jaxon made the absolute perfect pick.

In a tough position with defensive tackles, and wide receivers on the board -- Jaxon made the sensible decision for the future of the organization.

14. Carolina Panthers: Lane Johnson, OT -- Oklahoma

Though selecting a tackle was not high on the needs list for the Panthers, Johnson is the best player on the board and the perfect replacement for the guy Dan Kadar compares him to: Jordan Gross. Gross might have been a cap casualty this season if the Panthers had anyone that could play left tackle. That changes with the selection of Johnson. The Panthers have the luxury of starting Johnson on the right side until Gross is ready to retire, or they could go ahead and cut the biggest salary on the offense. New GM Dave Gettleman is looking at the long term, and first and foremost he needs to make sure his quarterback's blind side is protected for the long term. He would consider himself very fortunate to land a tackle like Johnson at No. 14.

This was the perfect way to handle the pick. It might not move the needle on draft day, or get people really excited for Panthers' football, but it solves a long-term need. Johnson can play right tackle in 2013, and then transition over to left tackle in 2014 -- just like Jordan Gross did when his career started.

Depending on who you talk to, some thing Johnson could wind up being the best left tackle of the class. Given other teams in the mock leaned heavily towards defense, it makes a lot of sense to poach a future left tackle for Carolina, and as a by-product keep him away from New Orleans.

It allows Carolina to take the best defensive tackle or wide receiver in the second round, and that would be an ideal draft-day scenario.

In case you missed it, here were the first thirteen picks.

1. Kansas City: Luke Joeckel, OT -- Texas A&M

2. Jacksonville: Geno Smith, QB -- West Virginia

3. Oakland: Sharrif Floyd, DT -- Florida

4. Philadelphia: Eric Fisher, OT -- Central Michigan

5. Detroit: Ezekiel Ansah, DE -- BYU

6. Cleveland: Dion Jordan, OLB -- Oregon

7. Arizona: Barkevious Mingo, OLB -- LSU

8. Buffalo: Jarvis Jones, OLB -- Georgia

9. Jets: Chance Warmack, OG -- Alabama

10. Tennessee: Dee Milliner, CB -- Alabama

11. San Diego: Star Lotulelei, DT -- Utah

12. Miami: Desmond Trufant, CB -- Washington

13. Tampa Bay: Xavier Rhodes, CB -- Florida State

Please follow the link and give Jaxon's draft a grade... *cough* A... *cough*

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