Sorry I’ve been slack on updating everybody with some potential draft prospects for the Panthers, but I promise to roll out plenty of candidates this week. That being said lets take a look at Stanford’s David Yankey. Yankey is currently listed as the number one guard prospect from most sources and guards have a tendency to slip late in the first round. The Panthers desperately need a tackle, but if Yankey is available at pick 28 they should not hesitate to snatch him up. Yankey has agility and quickness reminiscent of All-Pro center Ryan Kalil. Listed as 6’5″ and 314 pounds, he is certainly a hog molly. Gettleman has the philosophy to build from the inside out, so it would not surprise me in the least to see the Panthers address the offensive line with their first pick.
The Panthers lost both starting guards Amini Silatolu and Gary Williams to season ending injuries so it is hard to say if they will return to form. Drafting Yankey will provide depth to an offensive line that converted a defensive tackle to play guard as a result of so many injuries. Yankey is listed as the best pulling guard in his class. He is an absolute beast at run blocking, able to get to the second level and neutralize linebackers and defensive backs. He shows great lateral agility for his size, but most scouts believe he is best suited to play guard at the next level. Yankey helped pave the way for Standford running back Tyler Gaffney’s 1700 rushing yards this season. He would be an excellent compliment to Amini Silatolu and could take over Gary Williams starting spot in his first season. Williams is best suited as a backup and should not be the starting right guard for the Panthers.
We have yet to see what Edmund Kugbila can do as he was held out all season with an injury. Yankey played in the Pac-12 against more proven competition. He seems to be NFL ready and could provide the offensive line with stability, agility, and depth. Offensive lineman typically do not have many highlight plays but this video has some pretty impressive blocks. Yankey is a bruiser and I for one would love to see him in a Panthers jersey.