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Panthers select Cam Newton with first overall pick in NFL Draft

04.28.11 at 8:10 pm ET

The Panthers kicked off the 2011 NFL draft by selecting Auburn quarterback Cam Newton first overall. Newton, who won the Heisman Trophy as a junior this past season, has good size and tremendous athletic ability. His upside may be greater than that of any other player in the entire draft.

If you’re seeking one man’s opinion, this is a terribly risky pick for the Panthers. Newton is very raw and is a ways away from being an NFL quarterback. If he can reach his potential, he could be one of the more dynamic players in the league. If he can’t, the Panthers, who already have a young quarterback in Jimmy Clausen, could pay for it. First overall picks should be franchise players, and given the risk factor with Newton, it’s hard to tell whether he will definitely be that franchise player.

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