Bleacher Report Believes Bryce Young’s Best NFL Fit is NFC South Also-ran

Bryce Young's best NFL fit

Getty Bleacher Report's Alex Ballentine believes Bryce Young's best NFL fit is with the Carolina Panthers (Photo by Brandon Sumrall/Getty Images)

If Bleacher Report’s Alex Ballentine is correct about Bryce Young’s NFL destination when the Heisman-winning Alabama quarterback inevitably takes his talents to the professional ranks, the Carolina Panthers would be wise to invest more in their offensive line this offseason via the draft and free agency.

Young is a projected top pick in 2023, and the Panthers are off to a 2-5 start, so a possible match in the first round of the next NFL draft is well within reason. While giving up the 7th highest number of sacks doesn’t inspire the most confidence in the smaller quarterback’s sustainability and ability to avoid injury in the NFL, Ballentine pegs Carolina as the perfect fit due to the pieces already in place.

“Young also doesn’t necessarily need a specific roster to find success,” Ballentine writes. “His ability to throw off-schedule and off-platform would give him a chance to succeed even on an offense going through growing pains up front. The Panthers certainly fit that mold. They have already given up 20 sacks this season but have a No. 1 receiver in D.J. Moore who Young could lean on early.”

Analyst Grades Bryce Young as Top Quarterback in 2023 Draft Class

Bryce Young has the most accomplished resume of any quarterback in the running to be the top pick in the 2023 NFL draft. Young boasts a Heisman, an SEC Championship, and does have College Football Playoff Championship as Mac Jones’ backup. Still, it will be what Young does the rest of the 2022 season that determines whether he will be selected over contemporaries like C.J. Stroud and Hendon Hooker, who both own undefeated records and would qualify for the Playoff if it started today.

Young’s measurables and achievements certainly make him a top option, but FOX Sports draft analyst Rob Rang implied in his latest draft quarterback rankings on October 26 that he may need to see the Crimson Tide signal-caller stay healthy in his assessment of No. 9.

“The shoulder injury sustained by Young earlier this season only adds to the concern, which obviously makes his medical evaluation at the NFL Combine critical to his final grade,” Rang wrote.

Bryce Young’s Size Seen as Potential Drawback

FOX Sports’ Rob Rang is far from the first media figure to wonder about Bryce Young’s viability as an NFL quarterback due to his size, but he brought up a good bit of history when talking about the possibility the Pasadena, California product being selected in the first round of the draft.

“Young has bulked up during his time at Alabama, but he still does not possess the ideal body armor for playing at the NFL level,” said Rang. “Consider that the last quarterback selected in the first round weighing less than 200 pounds was Jim McMahon, way back in 1982.”

Young could certainly defy any doubts of him having the physique to be a top option in the right system and with an offensive line capable of protecting him from pro pass-rushers in front of him. Still, potential red flags surrounding his size could prove hard to ignore for NFL scouts.

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