Predicting The Impact Of Every Carolina Panthers 2014 Draft Pick

Predicting the Impact of Every Carolina Panthers 2014 Draft Pick

roger goodell nfl draft
Brad Penner- USA Today Sports

Carolina didn't have a bad draft, but they didn't have any standout selections either. I see a couple of potential steals, but can these guys step it up at the next level? Let's go ahead and predict the impact of every Panthers 2014 NFL Draft pick.

WR Kelvin Benjamin

kelvin benjamin carolina panthers
Brian Spurlock- USA Today Sports

WR Kelvin Benjamin

kelvin benjamin carolina panthers
Brian Spurlock- USA Today Sports

After the departure of Steve Smith, Brandon Lafell and Ted Ginn Jr, grabbing Florida State's wideout was a no-brainer. He does lack the ideal speed and route running skills, but with Cam Newton at center, Benjamin fits well into the Panthers' scheme. The big-bodied receiver will be a starter and should make a solid impact his rookie season.

DE Kony Ealy

kony ealy carolina panthers
Kevin Jairaj- USA Today Sports

DE Kony Ealy

kony ealy carolina panthers
Kevin Jairaj- USA Today Sports

Kony Ealy could develop into a nice option at pass rusher, especially learning behind Charles Johnson and Greg Hardy. However, it looks as if Hardy may find himself in some legal trouble. If he is forced to miss any time, Ealy may be thrown into the mix as a starter from day one. With his outstanding athletic ability, he may even see some time as a rush linebacker. He was a dominant force in the SEC and a steal at No. 60 overall.

G Trai Turner

trai turner carolina panthers
Nelson Chenault- USA Today Sports

G Trai Turner

trai turner carolina panthers
Nelson Chenault- USA Today Sports

In Baton Rouge, I was able to watch Trai Turner play at LSU. With a big body and great strength , he is outstanding at holding off defenders. He was one of the main keys in the Tigers' excellent run game. However, I think he should have stayed at least another year to develop; Turner was a third-year sophomore at LSU before entering the draft. He may have to wait it out a couple of years in Carolina before developing into a solid starter.

SS Tre Boston

tre boston carolina panthers
Bob Donnan- USA Today Sports

SS Tre Boston

tre boston carolina panthers
Bob Donnan- USA Today Sports

North Carolina's strong safety comes into the league as a converted cornerback. He may have been a bit of a stretch in the fourth round. Boston lacks the ideal tackling ability and ball judgement, but he was a three-year starter at UNC, so the experience is there. He was a bit of a head case in college, but may calm down in the pros. I see Boston being a solid backup, but not much more than that.

CB Bene Benwikere

bene benwikere carolina panthers
Jesse Johnson- USA Today Sports

CB Bene Benwikere

bene benwikere carolina panthers
Jesse johnson- USA Today Sports

San Jose State's former cornerback has good size and ball skills. His zone coverage ability is a plus compared to his man-to-man skills, so maybe after a little growth and development, Benwikere could find himself playing in nickel formations. Don't count him out in special teams either.

RB Tyler Gaffney

tyler gaffney carolina panthers
Robert Hanashiro- USA Today Sports

RB Tyler Gaffney

tyler gaffney carolina panthers
Robert Hanashiro- USA Today Sports

Gaffney carried the majority of the load while at Stanford. I like to compare his size, inside running ability and hands as a receiver out of the backfield to New Orleans Saints RB Pierre Thomas (undrafted free agent in 2007). Gaffney has the skills and competitiveness to be a solid backup in Carolina's rush attack.


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