Sal Paolantonio Reports That Carolina Panthers Agree to Draft Cam Newton

Rob GregoryCorrespondent IIApril 28, 2011

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - FEBRUARY 27: Cam Newton runs the 40-yard dash during the 2011 NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 27, 2011 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

According to a report from ESPN's Sal Paolantonio, the Carolina Panthers have finally signed off on picking Cam Newton with the no. 1 pick in the draft.

Here is what Sal reported earlier on ESPN.com:

"Jerry Richardson the owner of the team met with Marty Hurney the general manager and the head coach Ron Rivera and he signed off on the proposal of drafting Cam Newton, who he met with in his home for many, many hours and was very impressed with."

That means that we may finally have some assurance on what the Panthers will do. There will not be a trade, and it will not be Marcell Dareus or Patrick Peterson or AJ Green.

Well, not according to Sal at least.

More importantly, this is nail-in-the-coffen type news for Jimmy Clausen. If the Panthers were truly interested in continuing his development, than the team might have instead gone with AJ Green; if there were still not enough progress from Clausen in year two, well there is always the possibility of getting back into the Andrew Luck sweepstakes.

The Panthers have gone in another direction.

And it’s not like they won’t be getting an amazing athlete with the pick.

Cam Newton has amazing upside, and has the potential to make the Panthers a very fun team to watch. The off-field concerns seem overblown, but the concerns about his accuracy? That’s always valid.

Is he a run-first, pass-second quarterback? At the NFL level, he won’t last long with that type of game.

Still, it’s hard not to root for the guy. He is an explosive, dynamic player. And a lot of football fans, not just the ones in Panthers jerseys, will be looking forward to seeing his first snap of the 2011 season.

If nothing more, the Panthers have got some excitement back on their side. At least for now.