Chiefs get 5th-round pick

Updated: October 19, 2009, 10:44 PM ET
By John Clayton | ESPN.com

The Carolina Panthers, still desperate for help at defensive tackle, acquired Kansas City Chiefs defensive tackle Tank Tyler in exchange for a fifth-round choice in the 2010 draft.

The deal isn't much of a surprise. The Panthers had been looking at the Chiefs' defensive line since the start of the exhibition season, waiting to see if a run-stopping defensive tackle would become available.

Tyler was a natural fit. A third-round pick in the 2007 draft, Tyler won the starting nose tackle job in training camp, but he lost the job to veteran Ron Edwards in the past four weeks. The 6-foot-2, 306-pound Tyler was making the conversion from a defensive tackle in the 4-3 to a 3-4 nose tackle.

"Tank is a young defensive tackle who we think will fit in well with us," said Carolina general manager Marty Hurney, who scouted Tyler in the preseason. "He has good size and athletic ability."

The need for a run-stopping defensive tackle started in the preseason when Ma'ake Kemoeatu was lost for the season. The Panthers traded for Louis Leonard of the Browns, but he suffered a season-ending injury. He cost the Panthers a sixth-round pick. The Panthers, who traded next year's first-rounder to the 49ers, have four remaining picks -- a No. 2, a No. 3, a No. 4, and a No. 7.

To fix the defensive tackle position, the Panthers also signed Hollis Thomas, who started Sunday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and played approximately 30 plays.

John Clayton is a senior writer for ESPN.com. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

John Clayton

NFL senior writer