April 23, 2010 // NFL Fighting Irish

Clausen Taken 48th By Carolina

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Jimmy Clausen’s draft slide has finally come to an end.  The Carolina Panthers, making their first pick of the draft, secured potentially one of the biggest steals of the draft by selecting Clausen 48th overall midway through the 2nd round.

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Jimmy Clausen's draft free fall ended when the Carolina Panthers picked him 48th overall Friday night. (Photo - IconSMI)

Clausen, projected by many as a top 10 pick ended up sliding farther than even Todd McShay could have imagined.  In the end, 47 other players heard their names called before Clausen including two players from Rutgers, two from South Florida, one from Fresno State, and one from Idaho.

Yikes.

The one bright side for Clausen is that he landed in a pretty good situation.  The Panthers have a very solid offensive line and have one of the best running games int he NFL.  They also are short on quarterbacks with former undrafted free agent Matt Moore penciled in as their starting QB for 2010.  Throw in one of the best receivers in the NFL in Steve Smith and it’s a pretty solid situation for Clausen to start his NFL career.  Later in the draft the Panthers also added another weapon to their offense in LSU wide receiver Brandon LaFell.

The negative side of the situation in Carolina, however, is that John Fox is on a short leash and might be sitting squarely on one of the hottest seats in the NFL.  After boasting the second best record in the NFC in 2008, the Panthers fell apart in their playoff loss to Arizona before drifting back down to mediocrity in 2009.

The Panthers got rid of long time starting quarterback Jake Delhomme this off-season and had planned on rolling the dice with Moore in 2010, but when Clausen was gift wrapped for them, they just couldn’t pass up the chance to draft a potential franchise signal caller like Clausen.

Hopefully Clausen learns from Brady Quinn’s draft fall and makes it to training camp on time.  Quinn’s agent held out for an incentive laden contract that ended up not helping Quinn at all.  If Clausen is in camp on time, he’ll have a great chance to win the starting job.  With DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart in the backfield, he likely won’t be asked to do too much from the get go either.

Comments to this Article

  • IrishChan commented on April 24th, 2010 at 10:20 am

    This is a blessing for JC. Being a Top 10 pick is more about money and pride any more. He fell into the 2nd round and could compete for a starting job…on a pretty good team…

    [Reply]

  • spiceyirish commented on April 24th, 2010 at 10:33 am

    First and foremost, the Carolina Panthers like to run the ball and they run the ball very well. Jonathan Stewart and DeAngelo Williams are both coming off 1000+ rushing yard years. This automatically takes the pressure off Clausen if he ends up getting the starting job (He has to beat out Matt Moore and Josh McCown). Plus having a receiver in Steve Smith, who made Jake Delhomme a lot of money, to help Clausen out with his play-making skills. I hope he wins the job, because Clausen can win some ballgames with the Panthers.

    [Reply]

  • Chapman commented on April 25th, 2010 at 9:13 am

    It’s perplexing Clausen fell as far as he did, but as most others agree he will be in a much better position to succeed than the first pick in the draft. If Jimmy doesn’t win offensive rookie of the year I will be shocked. It’s never about where you are picked in a draft, it’s about getting that opportunity. The Carolina Panthers are tailor made for a quality rookie QB. I am a Bears fan, but will be paying extra attention to Carolina this season.

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    Shazamrock replied on April 26th, 2010 at 6:58 am

    Chap,
    I too am a Bears fan having grown up in the Chicago area.
    About 10 years ago I moved to the Charlotte area. Let me tell you,
    JC hasn’t even hit the practice field yet and the excitement that he has already generated in this town is astounding.
    Yes he (Clausen) has two thousand yard rushers, Steve Smith, and a great offensive line.
    Now add a big body wide Reciever in LSU’s Brandon LaFell and pure speed in Armanti Edwards and the panthers are going to be something special in the years to come.
    Let the good times roll!

    [Reply]

  • kevin, ND’89 (honorary) commented on April 27th, 2010 at 10:39 pm

    Claussen was made for this situation and vice-versa. With all the hype he had arriving at ND, he was a huge – and I mean HUGE – disappointment who never, ever lived-up to his billing. Hopefully, for his sake, he can keep a lid on himself (?) – or whatever – and just play the game without trying to make it his game. He won’t have the pressure he had at Notre Dame. And though never lacking in the confidence department, he shouldn’t have such a hard time after 3-years of tutelage under Charlie.

    [Reply]

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