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Gettleman: I care more about pad speed

The Panthers GM says he doesn’t care much for ‘underwear speed’

He was of course referring to the scouting combine. That was one of many hot takes by the Panthers GM in today’s pre-draft press conference. Here’s more notes I took from the 34 minute interview, with some overlap with what has already been reported but also some additional nuggets.

  • Still shaping his board
  • It’s a 12 month process
  • Runs through the process and all the visits, etc…
  • A lot of really interesting guys to look at
  • We are function of the college game and its very different they days due to spread offense
  • Excited about 4 picks in first three rounds.
  • Run the ball, stop the run, rush the passer
  • Doesn’t care much about 40 times and underwear speed; he is interested in pad speed
  • He doesn’t agree with the devaluation of the RB; thinks its more due there not being any elite RBs coming out
  • He sees half a dozen three down RBs in this draft
  • Says the Panthers are in the position to take the best player available; last year was an aberration but they came out great
  • We live in a ‘what have you done for me lately’ world, in his position he has to think both short and long term…it’s ‘now and down the road’
  • We certainly use analytics
  • I’m not afraid to draft a player into a position we are already strong at. Look at Shaq Thompson, we drafted though we were loaded at LB, and we still are, which is point.
  • The back end of the draft has some characters
  • He asks a rhetorical question, to move up into the 1sr round it’s going to cost a 2 or 3. In this draft do you really want to do that?
  • A far as players with off the field troubles, it is part of the process, that’s part of the evaluation.
  • First four rounds, you look for reasons they won’t make it; in the 5th or later, you ask instead what might help this player make it
  • Old coaching axiom: Speed makes a genius out of all of us

Gettleman is a wealth of information but a week before the draft you have to wonder what was truth and what was smoke. He indicated he loved the depth in this draft at DB, DE, WR and RB. Honestly as I listen to him I can’t help but think he is being truthful.

So here is my prediction:

  1. If the Panthers make a trade in the first two rounds it will be to move back and get more early picks.
  2. If/when he first trades up it will be to improve the #98 pick to the middle of the third round.
  3. The Panthers draft class will be at most six players