Each day leading up to the 2021 NFL Draft, we will take a look at prospects that should be on the Carolina Panthers' radar. We will look at roughly eleven prospects per round to give a better idea of potential draftees beyond just the first round.
Here's our schedule for the next 80 days:
1st Round: Feb. 8th - Feb. 21st
2nd Round: Feb. 22nd - Mar. 6th
3rd Round: Mar. 7th - Mar. 18th
4th Round: Mar. 19th - Mar. 28th
5th Round: Mar. 29th - Apr. 7th
6th Round: Apr. 8th - Apr. 17th
7th Round: Apr. 18th - Apr. 27th
Prospect No. 67: FS Paris Ford
Height: 5'11" Weight: 190 lbs
Draft range: 6th
Analysis: Paris Ford is one of my favorite underrated players in this entire draft. I believe the jury is still out on him in whether or not he can become an every-down impact player at the next level but he is certainly one guy that would be worth taking a chance on late in the draft. His pass coverage skills are average at best but under the right coach and system could have those skills refined to turn him into a complete player.
Playing with reckless abandon and outstanding effort from the back end, there aren’t many safeties to be found who play with the bad intentions of Ford. It would be difficult to find a safety that runs the alley as well as Ford does, taking outstanding angles and landing massive blows working inside-out. Working from depth, Ford is especially balanced and comfortable working downhill. He is a tenacious run defender who plays a lot bigger than his frame would suggest. Athletically, Ford is smooth and explosive. When he is able to unhinge and transition laterally, he shows notable range, covering a substantial amount of ground. For as athletic as he is, Ford doesn’t make much of an impact in zone, appearing to lack the instincts to diagnose quickly enough. He can be over-aggressive at times, easily manipulated by quarterbacks, taking him out of position. When working in the slot, Ford has enough short-area quickness to survive in man, but gets caught looking in the backfield, getting flat-footed far too often. His over-aggressiveness also leads to some missed tackles near the line of scrimmage. Ford is a coach's dream, playing with outstanding effort and reckless abandon. His impact on passing downs, however, leaves more questions than answers. His instincts are the major downfall that could prevent him from carving out a starter niche early in his career.
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