Carolina Panthers’ best sleeper pick: Chau Smith-Wade, CB, Washington State

Smith-Wade played quite a bit outside in college, but projects to the slot for his NFL team. He was strong in coverage over four seasons with the Cougars (three as a starter), allowing 60 catches on 113 targets for 790 yards, 247 yards after the catch, four touchdowns, three interceptions, 16 pass breakups, and an opponent passer rating of 76.2. He also has experience in the box and as a blitzer at the line of scrimmage, but the Panthers want to see him in the slot, and he’s ready for that challenge, despite the fact that he had just 30 snaps there in college. The Panthers got him with the 157th pick in the fifth round.

“At nickel you’re never cold, you’re either in the run fit, you’re in the box or you’re guarding those quick guys in the slot, so you’re never cold at nickel,” he said. “I really love that about nickel and the defensive back variety pack, out of the corners and safety, just being that nickel, you’re closer to the ball.”

Story originally appeared on Touchdown Wire