The Carolina Panthers are about to draft a quarterback No. 1 overall for the first time since they took Cam Newton in the 2011 NFL Draft.
12 seasons later, Newton has had two stints with the Panthers but is best known for his 2015 season where he led Carolina to a 15-1 record and took his team to Super Bowl 50. The Panthers are expecting the QB they draft will see the same type of success Newton enjoyed in his prime.
“NFL Draft is around the corner, and everybody’s been asking me what’s my take on who should be the one the Carolina Panthers select,” Newton said. “This is how I judge quarterbacks as a whole — everybody can throw, everybody has talent, everybody has upside. But the thing that everybody doesn’t have — and it’s simple — it’s leadership and can you get a motherf***er to follow you?
“If I’m the GM; if I’m the head coach, I’m selecting Bryce Young.”
Newton’s prediction isn’t at all farfetched. Young ended his time at Alabama as the greatest quarterback to ever come out of the program. He endinisheded his career in Tuscaloosa throwing for 8,356 yards and 80 touchdowns — and is fully expected to dominate at the same level in the NFL.
During his first year of starting experience during the 2021 season he did not disappoint. That season, Young completed 66.9 percent of his pass attempts, throwing for 4,872 yards with 47 touchdowns and seven interceptions. Young’s dominant 2021 season led to him winning the Heisman Trophy in a landslide with 684 first-place votes.
Concerns about his size have been discussed over the process. Still, it ultimately seems as though the Carolina Panthers have waived off that conversation and betting odds say they are looking to make him their next franchise quarterback.
Rumors have circulated as of late, which have seen former Kentucky QB Will Levis‘ odds to be drafted No. 1 overall jump from +4000 all the way to as high as +400. Still, Young sits at -1000, per Vegas Insider — far and away the heavy favorite to be the Carolina Panthers’ draft choice.
If not No. 1, he won’t fall much farther. The 2023 NFL Draft kicks off Thursday, April 27 through Saturday, April 29 in Kansas City, Missouri. The event will be held at the plaza just outside of Union Station. The first round of the NFL Draft is set to begin at 8 p.m. ET. on ESPN, ABC and the NFL Network.
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