When it came time for the Carolina Panthers to make their first-round selection in this year's NFL draft, it was pretty much a given they'd either select a wide receiver or an offensive tackle, considering they had a serious need at each position.

To the surprise of some, that selection was Florida State wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin, whom many had tabbed as a second-round pick. But the Panthers like his massive size and went with the 6-foot-5, 240-pounder. With the first-round designation, Benjamin is the heir apparent to the departed Steve Smith, projecting to fill the role of the team's top receiver, though realistically it may take a season or two for that to come to fruition, as it does for most receivers.

"I think his development is good right now," Panthers coach Ron Rivera said. "We're throwing a lot at him."

The one thing the Panthers have lacked the past four years in their receiving corps is a big receiver that can physically punish a cornerback and go up and get jump balls in the end zone. After catching 54 passes for 1,011 yards and 15 touchdowns last season at Florida State, Carolina is counting on Benjamin to be that missing piece.