Marquis Haynes had a brief but impressive rookie camp for the Carolina Panthers…
The Carolina Panthers kicked off rookie minicamp on Friday with a field full of draft picks, undrafted additions, tryout players and a few returners. Fourth-round selection Marquis Haynes, a defensive end from Ole Miss, joined them for only a brief one-day appearance to this point but was impressive.
At 6-foot-2 and 235 pounds, Haynes is much smaller than his new mentor Julius Peppers, who stands five inches taller and fifty pounds heavier. Regardless, it may be to his advantage depending on how new defensive coordinator Eric Washington elects to employ his services.
Haynes graduated from Ole Miss on Saturday and was excused from minicamp to participate in his commencement ceremony but caught the attention of many individuals prior to his departure.
According to Jourdan Rodrigue of The Charlotte Observer, Haynes stood out above his Panthers teammates who were all selected late in the draft. Among the final four picks for Carolina, Rodrigue offered the following comments of Haynes.
"My attention was caught almost immediately by defensive end Marquis Haynes. The guy is a fastball. He already moves like a pro in drills … I am really looking forward to watching him work against more tenured players."
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While it is difficult to fully grasp just how well an individual will transition into the NFL, especially without full pads and experienced competition, Haynes enters with an impressive track record. On his way to setting a school record for career sacks (32), the rookie tied three others with 10 in an individual season (2015).
Former Panthers defensive end, Greg Hardy, was one of the players with which Haynes tied although he earned five and one-half more sacks over his career. As speed rushers, it will be interesting to see if Washington utilizes a similar rotation as former coordinator Steve Wilks, on the end implementing Haynes in appropriate situations.
As the former defensive line coach, it is likely that he does. Coach Ron Rivera was also complimentary of Haynes in comments made to the official team website. “He looked really good yesterday, very pleased with what we got from him,” Rivera said.
Off to an impressive start, Haynes should compete for a position on the final roster by September.