Throughout the summer, we will touch on players on the Carolina Panthers’ roster looking to step up and emerge into the spotlight. Predictions will be thrown about. Egos will get inflated. Feelings might get hurt along the way.
Cat Crave Nation, here is your first Carolina Panthers’ PTP14 – Kawann Short.
Drafted out of Purdue in 2013, Kawann Short was a player that GM Dave Gettleman had been eyeing for
quite some time. Short was given a first-round grade by some and perceived by Gettleman as the best pure interior pass-rusher in the 2013 Draft.
Short is a bowling ball of an interior tackle, standing at 6’3″ and 310-pounds. Extremely strong through his legs, Short is great at leveraging himself around would-be blockers and utilizing his low center-of-gravity to attack the ball carrier.
Star Lotulelei was drafted in the first round of the same draft (13th overall), and is a perfect compliment to Short. Though Lotulelei is grabbing the headlines as the DT to fear, Short will prove that he is equally as dangerous to go against.
The ex-Boilermaker recorded his first career sack in game number three, against the New York Giants. Along with being one of the most complete games of the season for Carolina, it too was one of Short’s best games of 2013. He helped make Eli Manning’s day rough and frustrating, as he pierced through the offensive line regularly. Several big tackles, run-stuffing stops and quarterback hurries highlighted Short’s day.
Relegated to rotational work amongst Lotulelei, Dwan Edwards, and Colin Cole, Short wasn’t on the field as much last year as he will be this coming year. At his age, he has to be out there gaining experience under his belt so that he and Star can entrench themselves as the dynamic-duo on the inside for the next decade.
Kawann Short shined on MNF causing a huge forced fumble as the Patriots were driving and is constantly pressuring quarterbacks. KK will step into a larger role in 2014 and will help our defensive line become the top DL in the league. Each player amongst the front-four has a specialized trait and a role that feeds off of the other three.
Short has all of the physical tools to be a PTP’er in ’14, and the motor that was questioned on draft day was answered in 2013. Short was always around the ball and did not drift or slack off like was discussed prior to being selected 44th-overall. Stats and boxscores do not tell the story that KK produced in ’13.
Kawann Short will be a breakout player and a PrimeTime Player for our Carolina Panthers in 2014.