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Panthers to look at Ryan Mallett

The Carolina Panthers aren’t limiting their homework on rookie quarterbacks to Auburn’s Cam Newton and Missouri’s Blaine Gabbert.

The team with the No. 1 overall pick in the April draft reportedly will hold a private workout with Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett on Tuesday. This could be Carolina’s way of looking at alternatives if the team doesn’t take a quarterback at No. 1 or trades out of the first pick.

Mallett hasn’t been mentioned by draft gurus as a legitimate candidate for the No. 1 pick and many don’t even view him as a first-round pick. Carolina doesn’t have a second-round pick at the moment, after trading it last year for the opportunity to draft receiver Armanti Edwards.

Scouts agree that Mallett has one of the strongest arms in the draft. But at 6-foot-6, he isn’t nimble. There also have been some questions about his attitude and background issues.

I wouldn’t read too much into Carolina working out Mallett. I think this is simply a case of the Panthers doing their homework and preparing for every scenario. If they don’t take Newton or Gabbert at No. 1, I strongly suspect they’ll take a defensive player. They could look at Mallett if they’re able to add a second-round pick or could simply be exploring him in case he falls past the second round.