The Carolina Panthers let it be known that they had many needs heading into the 2019 College Draft. Looking at their picks, it was clear they wanted a little bit of everything at every position. It was an impressive draft considering the Panthers had many needs to fill and only so many draft picks to do it.
They took care of two of the most pressing needs while adding talent as well. Depth at running back and the need for replacement edge rushers were two of the biggest things Carolina needed in the draft. They managed to fill both needs, and did so nicely.
The Panthers got quality in the fifth round as they picked up Florida running back Jordan Scarlett with the 154th pick in the fifth round. Depth at the running back position was a big problem for Carolina in 2018. Christian McCaffrey was carrying the load at that position. Now, he should be able to have a couple of breaks.
Following the retirement of Julius Peppers, the Panthers needed an impact player who could set the edge and get after the quarterback. They got two players in Christian Miller and Brian Burns. Burns, from Florida State, will make an impact as a starter immediately. Carolina may have gotten a steal with Burns, who was the 16th pick in the first round. Miller, a fourth round pick from Alabama, has the potential to make an immediate impact as well. He is a hybrid linebacker that can both rush the passer and cover running backs as they come out of the backfield.
The Panthers traded up in the second round to get a offensive left tackle in Greg Little. Moving up to get Little means they feel he can anchor the offensive line for years to come.
The round three pick of quarterback Will Grier surprised many. Round three picks are generally projected as starters but Grier will obviously have to sit behind Cam Newton. However, the West Virginia standout graded out by many franchises as a future starter in the league. It is thought that Grier will be the best backup the team has had since Newton took over.
The 2019 draft was an important one for the Panthers. The roster is starting to get old and it is time for new names to emerge with the veterans or the next few seasons could be rough going in the tough NFC South.
Who Wants The Job?
The Los Angeles Lakers still do not have a head coach. That tells me they may have interest in a head coach or assistant coach who is still in the playoffs.
Reportedly, Monty Williams was one of their top choices. The current Philadelphia 76ers assistant coach and former New Orleans Pelicans head coach closed that door shut this week when he went ahead and took the open Phoenix Suns job before even talking to the Lakers.
Heading into the summer, there has been talk around NBA circles that free agents did not want to play with LeBron. We will find out soon enough if that is the case. Now one has to wonder if there are any established coaches who want to coach LeBron? If so, LeBron will likely get his way and Ty Lue, currently unemployed, will get the gig.
Kenley Jansen has been one of the best closers in baseball for the past five or so years. So, when he blows a save, it is news. Well, he blew one on Sunday when he gave up four runs in the bottom of the ninth to give the San Diego Padres a 8-5 victory. After the game, Jansen was asked about giving the game away and he focused, not on the walk-off grand slam that actually won the contest, but the bunts that preceded it.
Jansen basically called out the Padres by saying that bunting was the only way he could be beaten. I say “hold on” to that line of thinking. Jansen must have forgotten that he gave up a lead-off single and that the game ended on a grand slam home run. He was quoted as saying that it was two perfect bunts that beat him. No mention of giving up the lead-off single or the game winning blast, to a pinch hitter (Hunter Renfroe) no less.
I do not know about you, but I easily admire the athletes who own up and take responsibility for any miscues they have in competition. I find it hard to deal with excuses when failure takes place in competition.