From your first impressions of the 2013 Carolina Panthers draft class, who stood out to you the most and why? – Fabian in Calipatria, Calif.
During last weekend's rookie minicamp, sixth-round draft pick
It's not as easy in that format for defensive tackles to catch your eye, though Lotulelei and Short certainly displayed a hint of their power at the expense of tackling dummies.
How does the CFL's No. 1 pick compare to the Panthers' No. 1 pick Star Lotulelei? – Justin in Mollie, N.C.
You're referring to defensive tackle
Lotulelei's track record speaks for itself, and I firmly believe the Panthers snagged the most complete defensive tackle in the draft class with the No. 14 overall pick. Gaydosh was eligible for the NFL Draft but wasn't selected; nonetheless, he's an intriguing prospect. His 33.5-inch vertical jump at the CFL combine was better than any verticals logged by defensive tackles at the NFL combine, and his 36 bench-press reps would have been third most among defensive tackles. For comparison, Lotulelei recorded 38 bench-press reps and a 30-inch vertical at his pro day.
Why did the Panthers draft only one offensive lineman, even though we were in the top five for most sacks? – Jaylen in Charlotte
A couple of things here. First, the Panthers actually were smack-dab in the middle of the league in sacks allowed in 2012, tied with two teams for 16th with 36. Second, they only had five picks in the draft, so selecting one offensive lineman –
The biggest improvement for the line this season should come from simply being able to start the 2013 season healthy. With Pro Bowl center
With all the competition in the defensive backfield, who is the frontrunner to start opposite
Fitting that this question comes from North Wilkesboro not because of any allusions to racing but rather because this is a question fit for secondary coach/passing defense coordinator Steve Wilks(boro). That's beyond a terrible pun. I'll move on.
Anyway, I recently discussed the state of the secondary with Wilks. He expressed his opinion that Godfrey will thrive at free safety after moving there from strong safety late last season. Candidates abound at the other spot, from late-season starter