Carolina Panthers NFL Draft picks through day two
Sat, 10 May 2014 04:02:18 GMT —
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - The Panthers have selected defensive end Kony Ealy from Missouri with the 60th overall pick in the second round, a move based on best player available rather than need.
The Panthers led the NFL with 60 sacks last season and have two established starting defensive ends in Charles Johnson and Greg Hardy, the team's designated franchise player.
The 6-foot-4, 273-pound Ealy started 25 games and had 14 sacks during his three seasons at Missouri. As a senior he had 43 tackles and 9.5 sacks.
However, general manager Dave Gettleman said before the draft if there was a "blue goose pass rusher" on the board he wouldn't hesitate to draft him.
The Panthers also took offensive guard Trai Turner from LSU in the third round of the NFL draft.
The 6-3, 310-pound Turner started 20 games for the Tigers, including 13 last season. He had 115 career knockdowns.
An NFL.com analysis said Turner plays with good overall body mass and walls off defenders and generates movement in the run game.
The Panthers are hoping Turner provides some stability at guard.
Carolina lost four guards to season-ending injuries last season - Amini Silatolu, Garry Williams, Jeff Byers and 2013 fourth-round draft pick Edmund Kugbila. Complicating matters, veterans Geoff Hangartner and Byers retired this offseason and free agent Travelle Wharton isn't expected to re-sign.
Carolina surprisingly ignored two of its biggest needs - offensive tackle and cornerback - on day two.
In the first round, the Panthers picked Florida State wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin with the 28th overall pick in the draft.