Posted April 18, 2014

Carolina Panthers Mock Draft Tracker

Carolina Panthers, NFL Draft, NFL draft 2014
Carolina Panthers 2014 NFL mock draft tracker: Calvin Pryor, Louisville

Calvin Pryor, Louisville (Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

What will the Carolina Panthers do in the 2014 NFL draft? Keep track of all the predictions made in our mock drafts leading up to Round 1 on May 8.

April 17, 2014 — 2014 NFL Mock Draft 7.0 (Chris Burke)

Round 1, pick 28: Morgan Moses, OT, Virginia

We said: Far from the sexiest pick in the first round. Yet, this is one of obvious need, and, given the depth at the position, Carolina can find a starting receiver in Round 2 or beyond. Moses improved throughout his Virginia career, then kept upping his game right on through the combine.

April 10, 2014  2014 NFL Mock Draft 3.0 (Don Banks)

Round 1, pick 28: Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio State

We said: Given the depletion at receiver and offensive tackle in Carolina, those positions probably rate Def Con 1 in terms of urgency. But the best value is likely to be at cornerback, where Roby and TCU’s Jason Verrett remain available. Roby has top-20 talent, but his so-so 2013 season has dropped his stock. The Panthers might be the one to benefit from it.

April 1, 2014 — 2014 NFL Mock Draft 3.0 (Doug Farrar)

Round 1, pick 28: Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon State

We said: There’s no need for speculation when targeting Carolina’s biggest personnel need — the Panthers lost their three most prolific receivers in Steve Smith, Brandon LaFell and Ted Ginn in the offseason, leaving GM Dave Gettleman with the need for a complete rebuild. Cooks is a smaller player more suited to the slot, but there’s no denying his productivity — he led the nation in receiving yards in 2013 with 1,730, which led him to the Biletnikoff Award. His speed, especially after the catch, is truly electrifying, and he’d be Cam Newton’s best friend in a big hurry.

March 25, 2014 — 2014 NFL Mock Draft 6.0 (Chris Burke)

Round 1, pick 28: Morgan Moses, OT, Virginia

We said: For as much as the Panthers have to find some help at receiver in this draft (and they will), the offensive line is in as dire a situation following the retirements of Jordan Gross, Geoff Hangartner and Jeff Byers. Moses is not on the level of the Robinson-Matthews-Lewan trio, but he is capable of starting as a rookie at multiple spots.

March 18, 2014 — 2014 NFL Mock Draft 2.0 (Don Banks)

Round 1, pick 28: Cyrus Kouandjio, OT, Alabama

We said: The Panthers depth charts at receiver and offensive line have gotten wiped out this offseason, but there’s more receiving talent to be had than offensive tackle talent in rounds 2-7. Unless Carolina decides it has to have Florida State receiver Kelvin Benjamin, Kouandjio is the pick as a replacement option for retired left tackle Jordan Gross. Kouandjio’s stock took a hit at the combine with health issues regarding a knee injury, but if it checks out OK, his value is too high to pass on this late in the round.

March 5, 2014 — 2014 NFL Mock Draft 2.0 (Doug Farrar)

Round 1, pick 28: Cyrus Kouandjio, OT, Alabama

We said: Losing Jordan Gross to retirement will be a big blow to Carolina’s offense, as the big man clearly still had a lot left in the tank. Kouandjio, who is surprisingly nimble for a 6-7, 322-pound player, could fill that left tackle spot nicely over time. He won’t set any land speed records (he ran a 5.59 40 at the combine), but he’s quicker than that on tape, and he covers everything well — from mauling run-blocking to estimable pass protection.

Feb. 26, 2014 — 2014 NFL Mock Draft 5.0 (Chris Burke)

Round 1, pick 28: Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon State

We said: The Panthers are in dire need of an offensive tackle or two on the heels of Jordan Gross’ decision to retire. Expect them to dip into free agency with aggressiveness, which would free them up to seek out a buddy for Cam Newton in the passing game. Cooks may have locked himself into Round 1 with his combine — his 4.33 40 blew away the field.

Round 2, pick 60: Brandon Thomas, G/T, Clemson

We said:  At pick 60, Carolina takes a step toward rebuilding its Jordan Gross-less line.

Feb. 19, 2014  – 2014 NFL Mock Draft 1.0 (Don Banks)

Round 1, pick 28: Marcus Roberson, CB, Florida

We said: A first-round receiver wouldn’t surprise anyone, but this draft is loaded at that position, and the Panthers would be better served to address their shallow depth at cornerback. Carolina’s defensive front seven did all the heavy lifting in 2013, and an upgrade in the secondary is the key to the Panthers slugging it out with the NFC heavyweights in Seattle and San Francisco. Roberson, Roby and Purifoy should all be in the mix, but we’re giving the nod to Roberson based on his speed and natural athleticism in coverage.

Feb. 6, 2014 — 2014 NFL Mock Draft 1.0 (Doug Farrar)

Round 1, pick 28: Calvin Pryor, S, Louisville

We said: The Panthers may very well have the NFL’s most dangerous front seven, and though their secondary improved as the 2013 season went on, a little star power wouldn’t hurt. Pryor is a big hitter in the front half of the defense, but he also can cover slots and seams.

Jan. 9, 2014 — 2014 NFL Mock Draft 4.0 (Chris Burke)

Round 1, pick 30: Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State

We said: The Panthers have to find a wide receiver at some point in this draft. With a number of talented WRs already gone, however, they’d be better served to wait on a deep group than reach for one here. Instead, they can continue to bulk up in the secondary, with their choice at this point between Gilbert and boom-or-bust prospect Bradley Roby.

Dec. 5, 2013 — 2014 NFL Mock Draft 3.1 (Chris Burke)

Round 1, pick 29: Jordan Matthews, WR, Vanderbilt

We said: Not nearly enough attention has been paid yet to the second tier of receivers in this class — guys like Matthews, Jared Abbrederis, Tevin Reese or Jeremy Gallon who are destined to be productive pros. Matthews may not burn a lot of defenses deep, but he’s an ultra-reliable receiver at all areas of the field. He could complement Steve Smith now, then take over for him down the line.

Sept. 24, 2013 — 2014 NFL Mock Draft 2.0 (Chris Burke) 

Round 1, pick 9: Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio State

We said: The NFC South is no place to have so many lingering question marks in the secondary. Roby remains the top cornerback prospect in the 2014 class (though Jason Verrett’s right there), so this is a natural one for the Panthers.

April 30, 2013 — 2014 NFL Mock Draft 1.0 (Chris Burke)

Round 1, pick 16: Jordan Matthews, WR, Vanderbilt

We said: Taking a stab at the WR spot here. Matthews, 6-3 and 205 pounds, flirted with the 2013 draft following a 94-catch year. He opted to return to Vandy for his senior year, which should help him polish up his game. He’s not a burner but, like a Keenan Allen, exploits weaknesses in defenses.