Carolina Panthers: 2011 NFL Draft do-over (6 Rounds)
Carolina Panthers 2011 Draft Pick No. 203: Doug Baldwin over Zachary Williams
The Carolina Panthers used the last pick in the sixth round to select Washington State guard Zachary Williams. He never played a game for the franchise.
Williams tore his ACL during training camp his rookie year and missed the entire season. He was heading into 2012 looking to prove he was the right pick but he again dealt with injuries. The lineman tore a ligament in his right knee during pre-game warm-ups when his shoe got stuck in the turf. Just awful luck and he was cut before the 2013 season.
The sixth round is a tough place to find great prospects, which is why a lot of undrafted free agents wind up being better than a lot of late-round picks. The Panthers should have looked deeper on their draft board.
The Seattle Seahawks signed undrafted free agent Doug Baldwin following the 2011 draft. They already had a very successful draft getting KJ. Wright, Richard Sherman, Byron Maxwell, and now Baldwin.
Baldwin had a good rookie season having 51 receptions for 788 yards and four touchdowns. He didn’t play a lot over the next two seasons but in his fourth year, he started making some noise.
In 2014 Baldwin started all 16 games and caught 66 passes for 825 yards and three touchdowns. The wideout had established himself as a great starting receiver.
From 2015 to 2018 Baldwin caught 297 passes for 3,806 yards and 33 touchdowns. He also made two Pro Bowls in 2016 and 2017.
Unfortunately, Baldwin decided to call it a career at the age of 30. It is understandable why a player at his position would decide to retire considering all of the dangers of the sport and the long term health problems.
If the Panthers would have drafted Baldwin it would have given them a Steve Smith 2.0. Who knows what those two receivers would have been able to do together.