What They're Saying: Panthers' First Round Grades

The Pantehrs may have added to their history of first-round draft success. NFL Draft analysts weigh in after Carolina selects Louisiana Tech defensive tackle Vernon Butler with the 30th overall pick.

SI.com: Doug Farrar writes that "Butler may have received small-school dings from some, but his tape screams NFL starter." Butler also draws praise for his ability to command double teams on nearly every play. GRADE: A

Yahoo! Sports: Eric Edholm notes that the selection of Butler is a true reflection of general manager Dave Gettleman's approach to the draft. GRADE: B-

Walter Football: Butler may not fit an obvious need now, but he "could've easily been chosen a dozen picks" prior to Carolina selecting him at 30. GRADE: A

NFL.com:NFL Media draft analyst Chad Rueter likes Butler's potential but wonders if Carolina should have grabbed a position of bigger need. GRADE: C

SB Nation: Dan Kadar praises Butler's ability to stop the run and notes his pass rush potential. GRADE: B

Bleacher Report: Mike Tanier thinks highly of Butler but penalizes Carolina for not focusing on a position of need in the first round. GRADE: C-

**USA Today:** Steven Ruiz also notes that while defensive tackle was not an immediate need, it could pay off in the future. GRADE: B

Pro Football Focus: Steve Palazzolo writes that Butler has the ability to play multiple positions for Carolina, but his best fit is at nose tackle in nickel situations. GRADE: B


View photos of the Panthers' first-round pick as he tours Bank of America Stadium.


Butler may have received small-school dings from some, but his tape screams NFL starter

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