We need to talk about what the Carolina Panthers should do with the #1 pick.
Last week the Carolina Panthers made sure that absolutely zero fans of their team own a current player’s jersey by sending wide receiver DJ Moore and several draft picks to Chicago for the #1 pick in the upcoming NFL Draft.
The Panthers need help. Owner David Tepper pulled the plug on Head Coach Matt Rhule last year just 38 games into a seven year contract. They traded Christian McCaffrey last year. They gave up on trying to make both Sam Darnold and Baker Mayfield their quarterback of the future.
Things are so bad for the Panthers that they even bailed out of plans to build an $800 million practice facility in nearby Rock Hill, South Carolina, with Tepper’s real estate company declaring bankruptcy in the middle of construction.
Now, after deciding to hire Frank Reich to lead the team moving forward, both Reich and the Panthers are in desperate need of the one thing that has kept them from having consistent success in this league over the last few years- a franchise quarterback.
But which one?
Look guys, don’t overthink this. Yeah, you had lightning in a bottle with Cam Newton, but you’re not going to recreate it with Anthony Richardson out of Florida.
You could have gotten that Cam Newton feeling back by pursuing Lamar Jackson, but you wanted a fresh start. It’s not what I would have done, but I respect it.
And I know that there are some people that believe Panthers QB coach Josh McCown is the next Bill Belichick, but even old Bill is looking mighty human without a Hall of Fame quarterback under center.
Rumor has it that Frank Reich believes Ohio State’s CJ Stroud should be the Panthers QB of the future, while owner David Tepper is trending more toward selecting Alabama’s Bryce Young.
I haven’t said this often, but this time I’m going to say it loudly and say it with my chest.
David Tepper is right.
The Panthers need someone low maintenance. Someone that won’t run into danger. Someone that makes all the right reads, and gets the ball out quickly.
This is simple, Carolina.
All Bryce Young needs to be an NFL star is time and patience. I know Josh McCown is in the building, but he’s not going to suit up if Young isn’t ready to compete on day 1.
So I want to applaud the Panthers for going out and getting Andy Dalton– Someone that can give you 8-10 solid starts while showing Bryce the ropes of what it takes on a day-to-day basis to be a successful quarterback in this league.
And when Dalton has given you everything they have left in the tank, let Bryce loose, and give your fan base some things to look forward to as you head into the next offseason.
I don’t begrudge the Panthers if they kick the tires on CJ Stroud. He’s an elite prospect, and he has the one thing Bryce Young doesn’t- size.
But on Draft Day, you better pull that post-it out of your pocket like Kevin Costner and take the one player that can give your franchise and its fans hope for the next decade plus.
Bryce Young no matter what.
Let that sink in.