Carl Setterlund. 10th May, 2006 - 7:45 pm
1st Round: DeAngelo Williams, RB, Memphis (27)
2nd Round: Richard Marshall, CB, Fresno State (58)
3rd Round: James Anderson, OLB, Virginia Tech (88); Rashad Butler, OT, Miami (89)
4th Round: Nate Salley, S, Ohio State (121)
5th Round: Jeff King, TE, Virginia Tech (155)
6th Round: none
7th Round: William Montgomery, C, Virginia Tech (234); Stanley McClover, DE, Auburn (237)
I really like what Carolina did in the first two rounds and I can?t stress that enough. At #27 you?ve got to call DeAngelo Williams one of the two or three best value picks of the first day. I questioned the fit initially, thinking that Carolina needed some muscle to go with their finesse running game. Looking at it closer, that just wasn?t going to happen. Williams is patient, a good receiver, has good change of direction skills and was hugely productive at Memphis. Carolina loves sharing the load in the backfield and that is exactly what both Foster and Williams need with their durability concerns. I think the rushing attack is secure for the next five years with this pick.
Marshall was supposed to be a late riser and leap frog some guys into the first round. Instead, he went closer to where he was initially projected, but I assure you he should have gone higher. Give Marshall a year?s time and he will more than adequately replace Ricky Manning Jr.?s presence in the secondary. From this point on is where Carolina screwed up.
Don?t get me wrong, Stanley McClover at the end of the last round was an absolutely stellar pickup, but it wasn?t enough. The third round choices weren?t terrible, but I frankly don?t understand taking a developmental linebacker when you?re in a win now atmosphere.
John Fox should be able to get the most out of Rashad Butler, who is quite talented, but I question why they didn?t take someone equally as talented at a position of greater need. Salley, King and Montgomery ? which sounds a lot like a law firm ? are a trio of low-ceiling guys who are likely never going to end up as more than career backups and frankly in such a talented draft I don?t understand that direction. Looking over the Panthers draft they did decently.
The decision making from the third round on was questionable to say the least but the two gems in the early rounds save Carolina?s grade.
Grade: B -