At 5-7 and the most challenging part of the schedule still awaiting, Panthers fans may want to start worrying about draft position rather than fighting for a playoff spot. If the season were to end today, the Carolina Panthers would hold the 8th overall pick. Unfortunately, this class is not rich in quarterback talent. There are a few notable prospects such as Matt Corral (Ole Miss), Sam Howell (North Carolina), Malik Willis (Liberty), Desmond Ridder (Cincinnati), and Kenny Pickett (Pitt) but none of those are surefire candidates to be a franchise changer.
After swinging and missing on Teddy Bridgewater and Sam Darnold, the Panthers are in desperate need of a quarterback. They have made strides in their rebuild, particularly on the defensive side of the ball but to take that next step, they have to find the solution at the game's most important position.
This weekend, Pitt and Wake Forest will battle for the ACC Championship in Charlotte at the home of the Panthers - Bank of America Stadium. There will be plenty of NFL scouts in attendance including the Panthers who will be on hand to watch Pitt's, Kenny Pickett.
Instead of declaring for the draft in 2020 after his senior year, Pickett opted to come back thanks to the NCAA allowing athletes to have one extra year of eligibility due to COVID impacting the 2020 season. It turned out to be an excellent choice. Pickett would have, in all likelihood, been a day three pick especially with how deep last year's quarterback class was. After throwing for 4,066 yards and 40 touchdowns to just seven interceptions, Pickett could now be the first quarterback off the board in the 2022 NFL Draft.
"On the field, Pickett plays with a lot of moxie. It is easy to see that he is the alpha on the offense, and he has elevated a rather pedestrian supporting cast throughout his career. Pickett is a really good athlete. He is a threat to run on the run and is a very fluid mover outside the pocket. As a thrower, Pickett has a strong enough arm for the next level. He doesn’t have a gun, but his arm talent will get the job done. With a clean pocket, Pickett is very good at surveying the field to find an open receiver. When it comes to poise, he is willing to take a hit to get the ball to his wideout. Pickett doesn’t play afraid on the field, and he will do whatever it takes to win. His experience is also a positive part of his game. Pickett started four seasons at Pitt, having started as a true sophomore. He has progressed on the field every year. Few, if any quarterbacks will go to the NFL with as many starts as Pickett will."
Pitt and Wake Forest are scheduled to kick off at 8 p.m. EST. To purchase tickets, click here.
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