Carolina Panthers: Two firsts for Sean Gilbert
The Carolina Panthers have been involved in a couple lopsided deals. One deal that went in their favor was when they received tight end Greg Olsen for a third-round pick. Olsen has become one of the better players in their young history and the Bears have been picked on for the deal for a while now.
One that wasn’t as good for them was when Kelvin Benjamin was shipped to the Buffalo Bills for a third-round pick. While there may have been issues with Benjamin, his talent suggests they should have gotten more.
Here however, we want the worst deal and that ends up being the move to get defensive end Sean Gilbert. While it may not technically have been a trade, the Panthers did surrender two first-round picks for the rights to sign Gilbert away from the Washington Redskins. That came after a long dispute where Gilbert wanted to avoid a franchise tag. In the end, he got a $46.5 million deal.
Gilbert’s best season in Carolina was in 1998 when he recorded 81 tackles and six sacks while playing defensive end. He then moved back inside to defensive tackle and had a couple more decent seasons — although they weren’t necessarily great.
And they surely weren’t worthy of the price given up to acquire him. Gilbert finished his time with the Panthers hurt and never made the long-term impact they expected.
What makes it worse is one of the picks ended up being No. 5 overall in 1999. That pick was used on running back Ricky Williams. So yes, Carolina could have received the eight picks Washington got the following season from the New Orleans Saints had they steered clear of Gilbert. Plus, they would have had their other first-round pick they gave up. So in a weird way, Gilbert cost them nine selections.