Bryce Young – the rookie quarterback for the Carolina Panthers – had a memorable Friday night. Following the preseason finale against the Detroit Lions, this shining star from Alabama felt the weight of NFL standards.
But it wasn't his passing or play-reading that caught the attention of many; it was something much simpler – a slide.
From Heisman to Humor
"The way he sat down on the artificial turf after a 13-yard scramble on third down...," many would remember that as the moment which set up his first preseason touchdown, even if the game ended in a 26-17 loss to the Lions.
But for Young's teammates, it became a comical point of ribbing. "Never claimed for it to be one of my strong suits," Young confessed, light-hearted humor evident in his demeanor. "We currently have slide lessons already scheduled." It's not something many would associate with a 2021 Heisman Trophy winner, but Young readily admitted he never practiced the art of sliding during his college tenure at Alabama.
"He's definitely got to get better at it," third-string quarterback Matt Corral chimed in, suggesting a playful remedy. "We've got to bring out the tarp and soap and water." But for Young, playful jests aside, the NFL season's commencement looms large.
When asked if he's prepared for the Week 1 matchup against Atlanta, Young responded with unwavering confidence. "That comes because of my coaches and teammates just giving me the confidence and pushing me really throughout practice," he reflected.
"Having these games under my belt, it's great to be able to take that and translate to playing against others."
Coach's Corner: Young's Rising Potential
Carolina's coach, Frank Reich, expressed his faith in the young quarterback's potential.
Overlooking the slide, Reich praised Young's performance in the preseason games. "He was sharp and productive and made plays," Reich said, focusing on Young's undeniable talent. He also highlighted Young's playmaking ability, recalling a throw meant for Adam Thielen that unfortunately got lost in the lights.
But Reich's belief in Young's capabilities is evident, foreseeing a promising season ahead. As the Panthers prepare for the challenges of the new NFL season, Young’s enthusiasm, blended with a touch of humor, sets a refreshing tone.
While his slide may need some refining, his prowess on the field is undeniable, setting the stage for what promises to be an electrifying season for Carolina fans.
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