Rookie QB Bryce Young's NFL debut with Carolina Panthers falls short
Carolina Panthers rookie Bryce Young's lackluster performance in his first NFL preseason game raises concerns about his potential.
Carolina Panthers rookie Bryce Young's debut in the NFL preseason on Saturday was underwhelming, to say the least. In just three offensive series and 11 plays, Young struggled to move the ball, resulting in only one first down and no points. The main issue seemed to be the weak offensive line, as Young was sacked once and hit hard twice on his dropbacks.
Young's final stats for the game were 4-for-6 passing for 21 yards, one sack, and no interceptions or points. Despite taking three big hits during his limited playing time, the rookie managed to avoid injury and turnovers.
Let's break down each of Young's series. In his first series, the offensive line failed to protect him adequately. Young made a solid throw to Adam Thielen for a first down but was immediately brought down by Jets defensive end Solomon Thomas. The pressure continued on the next play, with Young attempting a deep sideline throw to DJ Chark but being disrupted by the Jets' defense.
The second series started with the Panthers deep in their own territory at the 2-yard line. The drive was uneventful and conservative, with the team opting for a run play followed by a short pass to Chuba Hubbard. Young's third-down pass sailed out of bounds, resulting in a 3-and-out.
Young's third and final series began with better field position but ended in disappointment. After completing a 5-yard pass to Hayden Hurst and a 1-yard run, Young faced a third-and-4 situation. However, the pocket collapsed, and Young was sacked for a significant loss, resulting in another 3-and-out.
While Young's performance was lackluster, it's worth noting that other highly touted rookies have had similarly rough preseason debuts. CJ Stroud, the second overall draft pick, struggled in his first game with the Houston Texans, throwing an interception and getting sacked.
Comparing Young to past Panthers rookie quarterbacks, such as Cam Newton in 2011, provides perspective. Newton had a mix of good and bad moments in his first preseason game, throwing for 134 yards with no interceptions or touchdowns. Young, on the other hand, failed to make any significant plays down the field.
Looking ahead, the Panthers will likely make adjustments to improve Young's performance in the next preseason game against the New York Giants. It's important to remember that this was just one game, and there is still room for growth and development for the rookie quarterback. Despite his struggles on the field, Young had the opportunity to play in front of a sold-out crowd at Bank of America Stadium, following in the footsteps of Beyoncé, who performed there just days before.