After trading their sixth-round pick, the 187th selection in the NFL Draft, to the Denver Broncos for two later picks, the Panthers used those sixth and seventh rounders on two pieces to round out their depth as they used the 212th pick, also a sixth rounder, on South Carolina tackle Dennis Daley and the Broncos’ seventh-rounder, number 237, on wide receiver Terry Godwin from the University of Georgia.
The 6-6, 324 pound Daley, who was selected by his teammates at South Carolina for the “Unselfish Teammate Award” for the offense, was certainly battle tested in his two years in Columbia as he faced off against the likes of Jachai Polite, Clelin Ferrell, Deandre Walker and Josh Allen during his tenure as a starter in 23 of his final 24 games at left tackle.
“Every week, it was a battle because every week I had to go against someone that was good and I played against a few first rounders,” said Daley. “I feel like being able to hold my own against those guys really helped me a lot and taught me a lot – I tell everybody [that] going against [#7 pick, Kentucky edge rusher] Josh Allen really opened my eyes and told me I need to step my game up a little bit.”
“Going up against him really opened up everything else for me as far as what I need to do for everybody else that I played against.”
Daley, described his 18-hour days at Georgia Military School, which he attended for two years before transferring to USC, as the toughest two years of his life.
“The whole two years I was there, it was really rough,” said Daley before recounting the 5a wake up calls, classes in the morning, practices in the afternoon and military formations thrown in throughout the day before the final call to quarters at 11p. “I’m just glad I was able to make it out.”
The 22-year old Daley can help to provide depth on the outside of the line – after drafting Greg Little in the second round to presumably start at left tackle for the 2019 season with either Taylor Moton or Daryl Williams kicking inside to the left guard spot, only Isaiah Battle and Dillon Gordon are on the roster behind the starters – the two have played in one NFL game between them.
Terry Godwin, the 5-11, 184 pound wideout whom the Panthers selected with their final pick of the day, has soft hands and runs fluid, natural routes – however, his diminutive stature will remind many Panthers fans of Damiere Byrd.
Godwin is two inches taller than Byrd and only three pounds heavier.
“We’re getting a good route runner [with] good hands,” said Ron Rivera. “He does have some return skills as well that we’re going to take a look at – he’s a dynamic guy with the ball in his hands and he can make people miss.”
“He’s got some speed.”
The Panthers selecting Godwin with the 237th pick is actually not the latest the Georgia native has been drafted – Godwin was actually selected 990th overall in the 2015 MLB draft by the Atlanta Braves but he elected to continue playing football – looks like that decision paid off. He’s much happier with the phone call he got today – the seventh round is better than the 33rd round any day.
“My heart’s with football,” said Godwin, who played in every game but one in four years at UGA. “Just being able to live out [this] dream that you’ve dreamed of – to get drafted – and it’s finally coming to a reality.”
“I mean, today has to be one of the best moments of my life.”