Panthers line up a bunch of visits with defensive prospects

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UCLA defensive end Takkarist McKinley and LSU safety Jamal Adams have visited the Panthers recently and they’re getting plenty of company from other defensive prospects in the team’s visitor log.

Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reports that the Panthers hosted Florida cornerback Teez Tabor and North Carolina State safety Josh Jones on Thursday. LSU cornerback Tre’Davious White and Tennessee defensive end Derek Barnett are expected in on Friday.

That list skews toward the secondary and defensive line, which isn’t a surprise given the strength of their linebacking corps. They did add Julius Peppers and retain several defensive linemen in free agency, but the defensive end group skews older so their interest in players like McKinley, Barnett and Wisconsin’s T.J. Watt (another past visitor) fits in the bigger picture.

The Panthers are hardly guaranteed to go defense early in the draft, however. They have visited with some of the top running backs, including LSU’s Leonard Fournette, as well as tight ends O.J. Howard and David Njoku in a wide-ranging survey of what’s available in this year’s draft.