Panthers Mock Draft

Round 1: Antonio Richardson OT Tennessee GM Dave Gettleman has expressed his desire for "hogmollies" on his team. at 6'6 327 pounds, Antonio "Tiny" Richardson is certainly a hogmolly. If Jordan Gross decides to return next year, Richardson could step in at RT, an immediate improvement over the mediocre Byron Bell, and eventually slide over to the left side once Gross retires. Protecting the face of the franchise, Cam Newton, should be the Panthers #1 priority, and they can do that with Richardson.

Round 2: Brandin Cooks WR Oregon State A fringe first-round talent that will inevitably drop because of the abundance of talent at WR in the draft. He is drawing comparisons to Steve Smith because of his diminutive frame (5'10, 186) and his acceleration and ability to make plays after the catch. If he were to fall to the Panthers, he would immediately be the starter across from Smith, and eventually replacing him once Smitty retires.

Round 3: Louchiez Purifoy CB Florida Purifoy would upgrade a secondary that has been the weak link of the Panther's defense for several years. Undrafted rookie Melvin White was burned time after time by veteran wide recievers but showed promise. Purifoy could start on the outside with White, moving Captain Munnerlyn inside where he is most effective (if he is resigned).

Round 4: Jordan Tripp OLB Montana Jordan Tripp is the type of player that the Panthers absolutely crave. A high-character team captain always seems to be around the ball, recording 336 tackles over his career at Montana. He would come in and compete with A.J. Klein for the starting spot across from Thomas Davis.

Round 5: Seantrel Henderson OT Miami Coming out of high school, Henderson was the #1 overall recruit. His college career has been the epitome of disappointment. Multiple team suspensions and poor play have plagued him throughout his time at Miami, but the talent is still there. If he can turn things around, he will be the steal of the draft. This is a high-risk high-reward pick that Gettleman will be happy to make because of a necessity for depth along the O-line.

Round 6: Aaron Lynch DE USF After a promising freshman season at Notre Dame, Lynch struggled at South Florida. Once considered a possible top-25 talent he will be available in the waning rounds of the draft. There are questions about his motivation and drive to get better. However, this is reminiscent of Greg Hardy coming out of Ole Miss. The Panthers took a risk on Hardy in the 6th round, and were not disappointed. Coming off a career year with 15 sacks and an expired contract, Hardy will be extremely difficult to retain. If Hardy is given the franchise tag, Lynch would sit behind him for a year, and once Hardy is gone, fit seamlessly into his role.

Round 7: Richard Rogers TE Cal A raw, receiving tight end could be a contributor on offense in upcoming years. As of now, he would be a special teams contributor and serve as depth behind Greg Olsen. if he develops, he could be a very valuable asset with the league now turning to athletic, receiving tight ends. An oversized wide receiver in college, Rogers could be another weapon for Cam Newton in the near future. (Note: Roger's father is the special teams coordinator for the Panthers.)

UDFA: Aaron Colvin CB Oklahoma After tearing his ACL during Senior Bowl practice, Colvin could be an intriguing add to the roster in free agency. The Panthers would take a flyer on Colvin and wait to see what he can do until next year, much like what the 49ers are doing with Marcus Lattimore.

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