Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Thoughts on No.1 pick

If you haven't read this story yet from Joe Person about the eight primary candidates for the Carolina Panthers and their No.1 pick, you should. Go ahead, I'll wait.

OK, finished? Now here are my thoughts on what the Panthers should do with that No.1 pick they earned by virtue of their 2-14 record in 2010. I haven't moved much off my position stated in this blog a month ago -- that the best option is to either pick Auburn DT Nick Fairley or trade the pick.

But I am OK with one more option now, too -- drafting Auburn QB Cam Newton.

As I've said before, Fairley reminds me of Kris Jenkins in his prime at Carolina, before he got too fat and his knees could no longer support that enormous body. Jenkins made life so much easier for everyone else on the defense -- but particularly the Panther linebackers and their defensive ends -- because he either took up two blockers on every play or he disrupted everything.

Like Jenkins, Fairley has his own baggage. But I’d still pick him over Clemson’s Da’Quan Bowers. I’d do that in part because the Panthers need DT help more than DE help (this is assuming they keep Charles Johnson, of course).

But... and this is a big but... I'm all right now with drafting Cam Newton, too.

The more I think about it, the more I believe picking Newton would be worth the risk on character issues and strong-but-erratic arm issues. He wins everywhere he goes, and he's charismatic and he plays what is easily the most important position on the field. I like him more than Blaine Gabbert, who strikes me as a little too similar to Jimmy Clausen. Keep his father way, wa-a-a-a-y away from everything, and I think he could work out here, too.

So with less than two months to go before the draft, I'm restating my position from my Jan.28th blog just a little. With the No.1 pick, I believe the Panthers should either pick Fairley, pick Newton or trade it away.

26 comments:

Sorenson's asleep again said...

Trade down, get a second round pick. Pick up Peterson in 1st round, Marvin Austin in 2nd.

#1 Panthers Fan said...

Ok this may be off the subject but here we go again. New coach same old Panthers. Do we or do we not have a ton of money that we can spend on free agents and we sit by as other teams are already signing players. We bring in Shockey and what? nothing? Mark my words you have to spend money Jerry to make money. He should just sale theteam to someone who is'nt scared to spend money!!! Sign someone PLEASE!!

Anonymous said...

#1 Panthers Fan, what an ignorant comment. Jerry isn't spending money because of the lockout, which is scheduled to go in effect tomorrow. I think we should get Fairley and that would help Beason and Connor make more plays. We should sign or trade for a veteran QB. I think the Panthers are hyping up Newton so that teams like Dallas and Washington will consider trading into the #1 spot.

Please quit hating on Jerry Richardson though. This is the man who brought the NFL to the Carolinas and has done a pretty good job so far. To make it to 3 NFC championship games and 1 Superbowl in 16 years for an expansion team is impressive. The Jaguars came into the league at the same time as us, and they'll probably be playing in another city soon.

Anonymous said...

I really really hope they are posturing for more picks by hyping up Newton. I would love love love to trade down to 3, 5, or 7 (Bills, Cards or Niners) and grab a 2nd rounder but that is probably wishful thinking. I am in love with Peterson for his versatility but conventional wisdom says not to draft DB at #1. Last I checked though, there is no rule against it. Has to be a first time for everything

Clear Sight said...

Only the slowest amongst us would think Richardson has the teams best interest at heart. His only concern for the last three years has been gutting this team to the barest of essentials, all the while charging the fans more and more. He is using the classical business model of a fire sale before the sale of the franchise. Good riddance. As with Shinn, we will find another owner/team to replace your garbage soon enough. F the Panthers and their ownership/management.

-former PSL owner

Anonymous said...

whoa Scot whatcha smokin buddy....avoid the auburn guys....that was a one year wonder...these guys are gonna be busts....Fairley will not be as good as the DT from bama....

punt said...

I have two scenarios: 1-swap picks with Cincinnati... we get Carson Palmer in return and a 3rd round pick. With the number one pick? Go DL... Fairley/Peterson/Dareus (whichevers available, in that order). OR 2- Still with the Cincinnati swap in mind, Trade Steve Smith to a contender.... namely New England
Patriots. Theres already been conversation. Of course Steve must approve, he's earned it. With the trade, we get one of NE 2nd rounders. Then with our No.1 pick, AJ Green.

Anonymous said...

They wont be able to trade with any other teams, come draft day. Unless the get a CBA worked out and reach an agreement. The possibilities of that happening are very slim. So go ahead and bank on Fairley or Newton. I would prefer Newton personally! How can you pass on a guy that athletic!!!

Anonymous said...

I glad someone said it. Cam Newton in his only year in Ju-Co WON that championship at that level. Dude won in the SEC and came back from the Alabama game down 21+ points and people are worried about computers and his dad's greed?!? At the end of the day Urban Meyer saw something in him to recruit him and replace Tim Tebow. So I'll trust the pros and what they say on draft day over nobodies. Seems as though people forget that Jimmy was projected to go in the 1st round and drop to the 2nd round and now folks want to complain about him.

Anonymous said...

Whatever you do NEVER listen to Sorensen. He knows nothing with his reverse logic drivel. Always do the opposite. No lie.

Funny how Ryan Mallet who has a precision 100 yard throwing arm and is 6'6" 257 lbs" has no mention? Newton is a joke and will get his clock cleaned in NFL with a record number of picks.

If you want a real true precision accurate passing QB with a hellacious gun who is the definition of an NFL franchise QB then pick Mallet. He is a huge stud who grew up on smalltown high school football in Texas and played at Michigan and Arkansas.

MALLET = #1 franchise QB at 6'6" 257 lbs".

Are you listening Rivera? Wake up. Dont just make a pc pick with Newton. He is not NFL QB material.

Anonymous said...

A defensive player wont win games for you. With the #1 pick you have to take a chance on getting a franchise quarterback. If you miss, so what, it will just be another bust story that will eventually go away, but if you guess right..... Im just saying, you have to take that chance on a QB because they win games for you.

Anonymous said...

This is the most boring draft in years...without Luck, there is no clear cut #1. I would love it if the Panthers traded down, but this isn't Madden. I don't know if there is a single player that someone would trade for...

Anonymous said...

yea ryan mallet really showed off that skill when he blew the game against auburn AND Alabama by throwing picks on the last drive..hes a statue in the pocket and cant read defense

Anonymous said...

QB 1, rookie year: 259 attempts, 47.5 comp.%, 7 TD's - 14 INT's., Rating 54.9

QB 2, rookie year: 299 attempts, 52.5 comp.%, 3 TD's - 9 Int's, Rating 58.4%

QB 1 - John Elway, QB2 - Jimmy Clausen.

Is anyone saying Jimmy Clausen will be John Elway? No. But how do you fully evaluate a QB based only on their rookie seasons? It used to be a QB had 3-4 years to develop, now there assessed on their rookie year and dismissed? You spend your 1st pick on a QB 1 year, and then use your 1st pick on a QB again the next year? Will the 1st pick in 2012 be used on a QB if Gabbert or Newton is assessed on their rookie year?

Anonymous said...

Agreed this pinpoint passer Mallet is the Panthers top pick. He didnt have anywhere near the recievers or talent Auburn had much less blocking but give a 6'7" 260 lb hoss a good WR with height and protection IN THE POCKET as the OL is supposed to do you will see Super Bowl(s).

The NFL is a different animal than college. Only true passing QBs can win with consistency. Mallet has been clocked at 90 mph and has an incredible 100 yard distance.
Un freakin real. The Randy Johnson of football.

Anonymous said...

Two points:
1) Dareus is both the safer pick, and has surpassed Fairley on many boards. Too many motivation and maturity questions regarding Fairley to risk a #1 on him...especially with a more consistent player that has done it for longer.

2) Gabbert is nothing like Clausen. Gabbert is physically much bigger, has a much stronger arm, with perhaps the quickest release in this year's crop of QB's. Missu's system, while also being a spread, was not as gimmicky as Auburn's and did utilize many NFL throws.

Gabbert has also been working on his 3, 5, and 7 step drops since he was 15 in preparation of playing in a traditional offense at the NFL level. Like or dislike Gabbert, he is not similar to Clausen at all, and is much more prepared for the NFL than Newton, while having similar athleticism. He is also clean off the field, which is another positive.

Anonymous said...

Scott, I buy your thoughts on Fairley and the need for a penetrating DT. But I also see some cracks. And when you have a #1 pick, you want to minimize your risk. As for Newton, he scares the bejeezus out of me. I don't think you sweep under the rug his personal history, his accuracy issues, or the potential issue of his intelligence. Really wonder what his Wonderlic was. Being a great runner in college can take you a long way. In the pros, it's simply icing. If the Panthers go QB, I strongly prefer Gabbert. And like Anon of 3:16 said, I truly don't understand your comparison to Clausen. Height and weight favors Gabbert. Speed favors Gabbert. Arm strength favors Gabbert. In fact, Gabbert's physical measurables are very close to Newton's. But Gabbert didn't steal a computer, is more accurate, is a gym rat and is smarter. He apparently aced his combine interviews. I'm curious how you got to the Clausen comparison.

steve said...

To me there are only 2 abosoutely can't miss players at the top of the draft: Peterson and Bowers. Trading down and picking either one I think is the way to go. If the Panthers can't trade out of the top spot, take one of them anyway. Fairly is too small. Newton is too risky.

Lech112 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lech112 said...

There's one team that is very interested in Newton, and would pay a lot to get him. http://bit.ly/NewtonFins

Anonymous said...

Its a good strategy to lay low on 6'7" 260lb franchise QB "Big Tex" Ryan Mallet who is the ONLY natural PURE passer and overlooked even after having the best combine. Mallet is the replacement for Luck but bigger and better.
He was #2 QB & #3 player in the nation out of Texas in 2006 & took the Razerbacks to #2 behind only Auburn in the SEC. Auburn obv had more talent paying millions under the table for their players.

Mallet carries ZERO baggage & with blocking plus a WR like Green would take it too the next level.

Pick Green and Mallet. The vet def underperformers need to step it up and earn their keep.

Michael Bacon said...

I have a new favorite pick with the first overall. Carson Palmer and the #4 pick.

ajeezzy said...

"The more I think about it, the more I believe picking Newton would be worth the risk on character issues and strong-but-erratic arm issues. He wins everywhere he goes, and he's charismatic and he plays what is easily the most important position on the field."


Thank you thank you, somebody has bought in to the prospect of Cam. Everybody is sweating the baggage but missing the package. Compare his missteps with those of other flameouts and come back to me. I never heard that TO was a character issue back in college but now he blows up lockerrooms. Basically the character check can be toss up.

Listen, i lived through the Rae Carruth character years and I know we value the BYU quality of character players. I get it, BUT this puritanical attitude makes us miss on opportunities - we get scared off before we do our due diligence (mike vick anyone?).
We're also scared by anyone that is an athletic QB (Kerry Collins over Steve McNair).

We should be very careful here. Fairley would plug a hole but on the whole our defense is not bad. Check the stats for the 1st 3 quarters of a game - we're not bad, by the 4th Q we're just tired. Fairley or any other defensive player we get will be too - same song. The best help for the defense is going to be the offense staying on the field.

Forget the arm for a moment - he can make all the throws and will develop...ready from day 1 is unrealistic in the NFL unless your game plan is 6 yd/pass like Sam Bradford. Newton as an athlete adds a threat to the best part of our O - the running game. Can't really question the man's poise (Alabama comeback, check the 3rd down conversions), his resolve to win, and his leadership. This last point is important - never saw Jamarcus Russell, Vince Young, Jimmy Clausen or (insert name here - any name!) carried off the field by his own players. Saw Rudy...but he doesn't go on to the NFL. After just one year at Auburn Cam won that lockerroom. Talent gets you respect but heart inspires your teammates and gets you carried off the field.

He's a winner, at whatever level. Can't overate that...he has no taste for losing - we need that. I'm not saying he's clear cut but if he checks out - i'd say he's worth a risk. Hey....where has safe gotten us? I see no rings and Cam answers more questions on the field for this team then he raises. We have to go for it.

Anonymous said...

Peterson from LSU should be first on their board.

He will be causing havoc for a decade eventually at safety (not corner).

The guy is 6 ft 2 in., 220 lbs. and runs like a gazelle, can return kicks, has great hands, and will bring the wood.

Safest and easiest pick.

Anonymous said...

We would never even hear about Gabbert if Luck never had stayed in school.

Gabbert strengths are:

- He has a GQ Face and personality.

- Good brand image for any team lol.

- He has great size
- He is mobile
- Extremely accurate and smooth when throwing short yards (10yrd or less) especially to the RIGHT side of the field
He has the Media on his side
He's from a well respected family

Weaknesses:

Throw on the run: He can't throw well on the run, if you doubt it go watch his tapes in college, lots of his interception has been from this, the most obvious one was the knuckle headed decision he did at his last bowl game against Iowa that led to his second interception and thereby sealing defeat for his team.

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Deep throw: Watching lots of his college games, he's not accurate and comfortable throwing deep throws, those he did at college are mostly down the field with his receivers (TJ MOE) making good catch.

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Toughness: He seems to have problems when he's been pressured. For whatever reason he's afraid of QB rush. He's lucky he didn't play at SEC, where you have fast LB with bad intentions...if he did, i can guarantee you, we won't be talking about him now. Most of his bad throws have been as a result of this. He's definitely not a tough QB. And yes you don't teach toughness, the best you do as a coach is ensure best protection to inspire confidence. If Carolina thinks they have super protection for him incase he's drafted... Good luck with that.

Pocket presence: He doesn't stay that much in the pocket, it definitely ties to the above points.

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Locks: He locks too much to a favorite receiver TJ MOE (#28). He doesn't go a lot to other people. Well.. in the NFL locking to one favorite player is a sure sign for "picks" that is for sure

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Overall.... He will get a shot playing Qb in the NFL. But to consider him as the best QB in this yr draft (which to me is maybe Mallet or Ponder) and deserve being the number #1 pick overall is silly. It sure would result in a superb job done by his marketing folks and his media cohorts who have sold an average QB at best as the hottest player in the 2011 draft.


After stating my facts, he sure does rmeind me of Clausen all over again. Just is bigger in height/weight, stronger arm( but wa inaccurate on deep throws) etc etc. Gabbert is overhype that clearly isn't consider a safe pick.

Will said...

I think i agree with trading down and picking up Peterson and get Marvin Austin in the 2nd and pick another wideoout in 3rd round. I think that with better Qb play Gettis and lafell would be beasty wr can't judge our receivers cause we had awful Qb play! when the cba is signed wr have 71 million to spend wr could also bring in sidney rice since he is from Carolina, bring in another DT like Barry cofield from the giants and sign Billy Volek from the chargers and he is a beast that should never been a backup! and lastly trade Steve smith for a third or fourth pick while er could get value for him!