CHARLOTTE -- With the 13th pick, the Carolina Panthers might not select anyone at all.
That's their spot in today's draft, but they have a solid opportunity to give it up, if the player they're looking for isn't on the board.
According to multiple league sources, the Panthers have what amounts to a standing offer to bail out if they want, with a chance to stay in the bottom half of the first round and gain extra picks.
Several teams are known to be trying to move up, notably the Philadelphia Eagles, though they weren't the team specified to have the wink-and-nod deal with Carolina.
Panthers general manager Marty Hurney denied Friday night that any deal was finalized. Of course, he could have said the same thing last year on the eve of the draft.
A year ago, the Panthers had pre-arranged a swap down with the New York Jets, who wanted Pitt cornerback Darrelle Revis. The Panthers were happy to trade, provided Arkansas defensive end Jamaal Anderson and Ole Miss linebacker Patrick Willis were gone. They were, the Panthers gained an extra second-rounder in the exchange, and were happy to add Jon Beason and Ryan Kalil with the resulting picks.
Likewise, it's hard to imagine the Panthers trading down if they had a shot at a few preferred players, such as tackle Ryan Clady. They've also been linked to chatter about moving up in an attempt to get to Southern Cal defensive tackle Sedrick Ellis, though that'll be tougher.
They have 10 picks already, but if they could add another third and change in a swap down into the late teens or early 20s, they could still get a tackle they need, such as Boston College's Gosder Cherilus.