NFL Draft 2014: The Panthers select RB Tyler Gaffney

Ezra Shaw

A crowded backfield gets even more crowded with another late round running back pick. Might be time to bust out the 4 running back sets!

With their last pick in the draft, the Carolina Panthers selected RB Tyler Gaffney at 204th overall in the 6th round. The Panthers forfeited their 7th round selection to jump up 20 spots in the 5th round and nab cornerback Bene Benwikere. You can read Nolan Nawrocki's profile on him here.

A lot of evaluaters pegged this kid for the 4-5 round range, so this appears to be good value at the bottom of the 6th round for the Panthers. Gaffney looks to be a short yardage back who hits the hole hard with some receiver ability. He was the bell cow at Stanford, averaging 24 carries per game. Gaffney's nothing special as a perimeter back or outside runner, he appears to be strictly an inside grinder who can pick up the tough yards. He lacks any kind of break away speed so a power running team like the Panthers is a good fit.

The Panthers already have Mike Tolbert and Jonathan Stewart who can pick up the shorter yardage, so this is certainly a curious draft pick. But Shula's offense calls for a lot of inside runs, so he should provide decent depth for a Panthers team that runs the ball more than most. However, with Williams, Stewart, Tolbert, Barner, and now Gaffney, it appears somebody has to go soon. Richie Brockel is still on the team as well (he can play FB). It should be interesting over the next few years to see who stays and who goes. Until then, Gaffney is a good fit as a depth running back.

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