The Carolina Panthers made wide receiver DJ Moore the first Maryland Terrapin to go in the first round of the NFL Draft since 2009 on Thursday night. On Saturday afternoon, they added another in Jermaine Carter Jr., selecting the linebacker in the fifth round with the 161st overall pick.
It was a surprise selection, as Carter was not widely expected to be drafted at all. But the Panthers clearly saw value in him, and he’s the second Terp off the board in this year’s draft. Cornerback JC Jackson was a projected mid-round pick, but is still waiting to hear his name called.
Carter was a three-year starter at Maryland, recording 103 total tackles as a sophomore, 101 as a junior and 90 as a senior. He also notched six sacks in 2016 and a team-high 3.5 last fall.
If Carter ultimately makes Carolina’s roster, he’ll be one of three Maryland products on the Panthers, joining Moore and wideout Torrey Smith. The Pittsburgh Steelers are the only team that entered this weekend with multiple former Terps (Darrius Heyward-Bey and Sean Davis). Carter’s selection might surprise some, but he’ll get the chance to prove he’s worth it.