Panthers coach Ron Rivera and G.M. Marty Hurney didn’t show to up Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert’s Thursday Pro Day. But in the mind of NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock, Rivera and Hurney should have.
Mayock was in attendance, and came away highly impressed.
“It was a better throwing-mechanics workout than what Matt Ryan had. Similar to Sam Bradford’s,” said Mayock on NFL Network’s Path to the Draft program Thursday night.
“He’s the first quarterback off the board.”
NFL Network league insider Mike Lombardi wasn’t in Columbia today, but has been in Gabbert’s corner all along. The positive feedback from Thursday’s Pro Day only reinforced Lombardi’s belief that Gabbert is deserving of the No. 1 pick in the draft.
“If I’m the Carolina Panthers, (Gabbert) is on the card I’m turning in,” said Lombardi. “… He can run any type of offense.”
The “type of offense” comment is relevant because Gabbert did not dominate in Missouri’s Mike Leach-like spread offense. Certainly not to the extent much less heralded quarterbacks such as Chase Daniel have. Daniel threw 72 touchdown passes in his final two seasons at Mizzou.
Gabbert threw 40.