Panthers news: Draft class look to continue jersey number legacy
The Carolina Panthers news team have revealed jersey numbers for their 2020 NFL Draft class, but can they emulate great players throughout history?
This year’s draft class for the Carolina Panthers will do down in NFL history. It was the first-ever to have each selection focused on defense as new head coach Matt Rhule and general manager Marty Hurney look to build the foundations for s successful future.
The newest recruits now have jersey numbers to call their own following as a recent team announcement. They can use this as a source of inspiration as they look to emulate other prominent figures throughout Panthers’ history that have achieved considerable success.
Former Auburn defensive tackle Derrick Brown was taken over linebacker Isaiah Simmons in the first round. He will wear No. 95 during his time with the franchise, which was once worn by prolific defensive end Charles Johnson.
The legendary figure played in Carolina from 2007-17 and notched an incredible 67.5 sacks during his time with the organization. This is second on the all-time list behind Hall of Fame-bound pass-rusher Julius Peppers.
Second-round selection Yetur Gross-Matos is a ferocious edge rusher out of Penn State that had a first-round grading. He has been allocated No. 97 that has been worn in the past by the recently departed Mario Addison.
The defensive end played eight seasons with the franchise before leaving in free agency for the Buffalo Bills this offseason. Addison recorded 55 sacks during this span which is the fourth-best in Panthers’ history.
Carolina gambled on the significant skill set of safety Jeremy Chinn to move back into the second round to secure the Southern Illinois product’s services. He will wear No. 21, which has been worn by the likes of Ken Lucas, Dante Wesley, and running back Tim Biakabutuka in Panthers’ history.
The No. 21 is widely known league-wide as that worn by Deion Sanders, who was an iconic figure within the sport that is regarded as the best cornerback of all time.
Notre Dame’s speed-demon cornerback Troy Pride Jr. will aim to make a starting spot his own during his rookie season after being taken in the fourth round by the Panthers. The player will wear the No. 25 shirt that is famously associated with Pro Bowl cornerback Eric Davis and recently released safety Eric Reid.
Kenny Robinson became the first XFL player to be drafted when the Panthers used their fifth-rounder on the safety. He will wear No. 27 that has been worn throughout history by Kevon Seymour and Deon Grant.
Defensive tackle and sixth-round pick Bravvion Roy will be aiming to follow in the footsteps of defensive end Mike Rucker wearing the No. 93. Rucker was a second-round pick in 1999 and player 106 games between 1999 and 2007.
Rounding off the rookie draft class was seventh-round cornerback Stantley Thomas-Oliver III, who will wear a No. 23 shirt that has been associated with Ken Lucas and Melvin White.