Panthers Draft: Why did Yetur Gross-Matos fall to No. 38?

Dean Jones
(Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images) Yetur Gross-Matos
(Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images) Yetur Gross-Matos /
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Yetur Gross-Matos, Panthers Draft
(Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) Yetur Gross-Matos /

Pass-rusher Yetur Gross-Matos fell into the Carolina Panthers draft plans at No. 38, but why did the Penn State product make it out of the first round?

The Carolina Panthers draft team could hardly believe their luck when edge rusher Yetur Gross-Matos was available for them in the second round. They wasted little time in taking the Penn State standout to put him alongside what looks to be a formidable defensive front in 2020.

Gross-Matos was projected to be a mid-to-late first-rounder, which made his slide to No. 38 all the more peculiar that the physical specimen dropped into the Panthers’ lap. NFL Draft expert Charlie Campbell from Walter Football might have found the answer after speaking to team sources.

"“One, some teams felt that he lacked “sizzle” as a pass rusher, aka he wasn’t especially fast or explosive. Some teams had him marked for off-the-field issues, but in speaking to a few other teams, they completely disagreed and had him rated very highly for character. Sources say the staff at Penn State raved about Gross-Matos, so this an atypical discrepancy between teams on the character evaluation.”"

Given his level of production at the college level, Gross-Matos is undeniably a steal where the Panthers selected him. If he reaches his ceiling, the versatile player could end up being a prolific pass-rusher at the next level with Pro Bowl potential.

His drop into the second round also landed Gross-Matos into a fantastic spot. Although the Panthers’ defense has undergone some significant changes this offseason. They possess some outstanding players on the defensive front that have the scope to cause real damage in 2020.