Amini Silatolu

Draft Grades: Carolina Panthers

The Carolina Panthers needed to upgrade the talent around Cam Newton, and while they didn’t immediately address their offensive needs, they ended up with a solid group which should help Newton develop in his sophomore season.

The selection of Luke Kuechly came as a surprised, but it was a welcomed one. Kuechly was the best player on the board and will immediately step into a starting role. He is expected to move into the middle linebacker position, with Jon Beason shifting to weak-side linebacker.

I was surprised by the selection of Amini Silatolu, and thought it was a reach, but I do understand their desire to address the interior offensive line. The main issue I have with the selection, however, is the fact that Cordy Glenn was still on the board.

Frank Alexander was a reach in the 4th round. He fits the mold of the type of well-rounded end the Panthers were looking for, but he has an uphill to earn playing time in Carolina. He’ll battle Thomas Keiser and Eric Norwood for playing time.

I love the selection of Joe Adams. At this stage of his career he’s nothing more than a vertical threat, but he’ll have the opportunity to work with Steve Smith in Carolina, one of the game’s elite undersized receivers.

Josh Norman could prove to be a steal in the 5th round, but does come with some character concerns. Having Norman and Brandon Hogan in the same secondary is scary thought. Clearly the Panthers are becoming one of the teams that isn’t concerned with character.

Selecting Brad Nortman in the 6th round was almost as bad as the Jaguars selection of Bryan Anger in the 3rd round. While Anger was a reach, at least he was the elite punter in this year’s class. Nortman was barely on the radar screen. There’s just no reason to waste a pick on a guy like Nortman. A handful of punters of his caliber can be found in the free agency process after each draft.

D.J. Campbell was a solid 7th-round pick. He’s best suited to play free safety, but will enhance his chances of making the final roster if he can demonstrate some versatility in training camp.

Overall, this wasn’t the most exciting draft class, but I like the Panthers approach – especially in the 1st round. Kuechly may not change the direction of this franchise on his own, when rebuilding teams can’t afford to pass up sure things in the draft.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Draft Grades - 2012, Panthers Comments Off

Carolina Panthers select Amini Silatolu, Grade C

The Carolina Panthers needed to address the offensive line at some point, but I am a little surprised by the pick.

Amini Silatolu is somewhat raw and is coming from a lower division which raises further concerns. He definitely has the size and strength, but I don’t view him as a guy that can step in and start from day one. With Cordy Glenn still on the board, this was a questionable decision.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2012 NFL Draft, Panthers Comments Off

Amini Silatolu scouting report

Amini Silatolu OG Midwestern State #57
Ht: 6’4″

Wt: 311

 
Strengths:
Prototypical size. A physical run blocker. Has the strength to finish off his blocks. Explodes off the snap and drives defenders back in the running game. Does a nice job staying low to hold his ground against the bull rush. Decent athleticism for an interior lineman; played left tackle in college; has the ability to get to the second level and move on pulling/trapping plays.
Weaknesses:
Level of competition is definitely a concern. Missed Senior Bowl with hamstring injury. Missed time with a knee injury in 2010. Measurables were very average at the combine; only 28 reps on bench press. Will be a liability in pass protection early in his career; struggled with blitz recognition skills in D-II and will certainly struggle in this area at the next level early on. Does not have the quick feet necessary to play tackle in the pros.
Comments:
Silatolu is a very difficult prospect to grade due to his lack of experience against top competition. Having missed the Senior Bowl, we really don’t have a good grasp on his ability to handle NFL-sized defensive linemen. He certainly appears to have the strength to hold his ground at the next level, but the jump from D-II to the NFL is not always an easy one to make.
Videos:
2011 vs Angelo State
2011 vs Texas A&M Kingsville 
Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Scouting Reports - 2012 1 Comment