5 Carolina Panthers players with genuine superstar potential

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Ian Thomas
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Ian Thomas /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Derrick Brown /

Derrick Brown – DT

Saying that someone is a star before he even plays a down in the NFL is something no one should do because it puts unfair pressure on them. In Derrick Brown’s case, it is very tough to watch his college film and not say he falls into this category.

Over the past three years, Brown has been one of the most dominant players in college football. It was tough for any lineman to shut down this guy for a whole game. The former Auburn Tiger didn’t play a lot in his freshman season but when his number got called as a sophomore, he did not hesitate to capitalize on the opportunity.

In the 2017 to 2019 seasons Brown started 38 games and finished with 11.5 sacks, 159 total tackles, and 31.5 tackles for loss. The defensive tackle had no issue getting to the backfield and wreaked havoc when he got back there.

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The Carolina Panthers selected Brown No. 7 overall in the draft this year and they believe he can be the wrecking ball in the middle of their defense. The rookie will be learning from and playing alongside Kawann Short who has had some success in his career.

The Panthers have a very young core for their pass rushers with Brian Burns and Brown being the key to the future. He should learn and adapt quickly because Carolina needs his aggression and strength out on the field.

Brown put up 28 reps at the Combine’s bench press. That doesn’t represent the power he plays with on the field. He overpowers his opponents and uses leverage to his advantage. He gets low and drives the lineman up and back which is something all defensive line coaches wish their players would do.

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If the lineman can adapt quickly he has the potential to make a name for himself early. If Donte Jackson, Yetur Gross-Matos, Burns, and Brown can reach their full potential then the Panthers defense has a very bright future.