Carolina Panthers: 3 bold predictions for 2020 draft class

Dean Jones
(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) Derrick Brown
(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) Derrick Brown /
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Yetur Gross-Matos, Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) Yetur Gross-Matos /

Scouting Report. YETURGROSS-MATOS. 87. Pick Analysis. EDGE. PENN STATE. 3. player

Carolina Panthers: Prediction No. 3: Yetur Gross Matos will surpass Brian Burns’ rookie sack total

The Carolina Panthers got a real steal with their pick at No. 38 when former Penn State pass-rusher Yetur Gross-Matos fell into their laps. General manager Marty Hurney even considered moving back into the first round to take the player. But they got lucky as other teams went in a different direction.

This gives the Panthers another player with a proven capability of getting to the quarterback on an already loaded front seven. Gross-Matos has all the size, speed, and athleticism that one looks for in an edge rusher at the next level. And he could end up being one of the surprise packages of the season in terms of production.

Brian Burns managed to claim 7.5 sacks during his rookie season last time out. And this is a realistic target for Gross-Matos if he sees plenty of time on the field. He does need to add more moves to his repertoire. But if everything clicks into place right away it will do his chances of making an immediate impact the world of good.

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Whether the Panthers use Gross-Matos at defensive end or outside linebacker is another matter. The player has been a bit suspect in run support. So if he comes in as a rotational rusher while he looks to build up other areas of his game. This might be more beneficial for his long-term aspirations.

Burns himself only saw the field for 42 percent of the Panthers’ defensive snaps in 2019. He made the most of his time on the field and Gross-Matos has the capability to do the same.

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