- Pat Yasinskas, ESPN Staff Writer
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As I’m sure you’re well aware, we published our Blog Network mock draft this morning. The Panthers don’t have a first-round pick, but I don’t want Carolina fans to feel slighted.
That’s why I’m going to go ahead and make my prediction on what I think Carolina will do with their first pick, which comes in the second round. Obviously, a lot depends on what happens with the picks ahead of the Panthers. Our mock only included the first 32 picks, so I’m doing some guessing on who might be off the board in the second round, before Carolina takes its turn.
I’m taking Al Woods, the defensive tackle from LSU. I know this isn’t the flashy pick many of you would like. But I’m not taking (alleged) quarterback Tim Tebow for the Panthers in the second round because I think that would be a wasted pick. Maybe Tebow develops into an NFL quarterback down the road, but John Fox doesn’t have the time to find out.
I also know a lot of fans are thinking Carolina will go with a wide receiver here. It could happen because the need is definitely there. But Carolina’s history of drafting receivers in the second round (Keary Colbert and Dwayne Jarrett) isn’t pretty at all. I think the Panthers will draft a wide receiver a little later.
Bottom line to my logic on Woods: I’d really like to give the Panthers super-sized defensive tackle Terrence Cody, but he went in the first round of our mock, although I have seen some others where he’s available in the second round. The Panthers really need a run stuffer for the middle of their defensive line. Fox has had Kris Jenkins and Maake Kemoeatu through the years and they worked out well. After Cody, Woods is the big body that makes the most sense for the Panthers.
Again, we all know Fox is under pressure to win this year. He’s a defensive coach and one of his core philosophies is to stop the run. That’s why I think Fox sticks with basics and gets a big guy for the middle of his defensive line.