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Tony Pauline: Clowney Is Best Defensive Prospect Since Bruce Smith

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Longtime NFL draft analyst from DraftInsider.net, tony Pauline, talked with Mac and Jim about the Panthers draft outlook and several of the top prospects including JaDeveon Clowney and Jonny Manziel. Tony also discusses the prospects of Tajh Boyd (not a big fan).

On the Panthers first round pick: You have your three offensive tackles, Jake Matthews, Greg Robinson and Taylor Lewan, go off the board quickly. Then you’re looking at Cyrus Kouandjio, he really worked out horribly at the combine and it came out his arthritic knees knocked him off some boards, that really moves Zack Martin up to the middle of round one, so there’s going to be a void there, late in the first round, for offensive tackles. When you look at the wide receiver position at the end of round one, you have guys like Odell Beckham Jr and Brandin Cooks, who’s a lot like Steve Smith, so there should be some Steve Smith type of WRs available to the Panthers at the end of round one.

On how many wide receivers will be off the board when the Panthers pick: Three, maybe four.

On the weakest position in the draft: Probably inside linebacker and I’m not a fan of the cornerback class. There are some decent players at the top, but it thins out quickly. The safety class is atrocious.

On Morgan Moses (LT – UVa): A lot of people like him as a late first round pick, I don’t. He’s been very incosistent. I watched him as a sophomore, I thought he was going to be a star and it never came to fruition.

On Brandon Thomas (OG/OT – Clemson): The Panthers like him. He played phenomenally at guard as a red-shirt sophomore. Moved to left tackle for his last two seasons, a lot of people thought he was out of position, but he went to the Senior Bowl and did a great job at left tackle, holding his own against Dee Ford and several top pass rushers. He had a very good combine workout and I think he’ll be there for the Panthers at the end of the second round. He doesn’t look the part, but he gets the job done.

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