5 shock quarterback targets for the Carolina Panthers in 2023

(Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports) Geno Smith
(Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports) Geno Smith /
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Carolina Panthers
(Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports) Michael Penix Jr. /

Carolina Panthers could target Michael Penix Jr.

If the Carolina Panthers do enough over their remaining fixtures to put themselves out of the running for Bryce Young or C.J. Stroud, it would be a blow. It might also force those in power to examine those further down the college pecking order in pursuit of getting their franchise quarterback.

One prospect that is worthy of further investigation is Michael Penix Jr. Although the Washington product is flying relatively under the radar, his exceptional release and pocket maneuvering could be of use providing he gets time to further home his craft at the next level.

Nobody is expecting Penix to immediately start for the Panthers or anyone else. However, his athleticism and ability to see the field are traits that can serve him well in the right set-up.

Much was made about Carolina’s failure to properly evaluate or develop quarterbacks under Matt Rhule. That could be a thing of the past with a new head coach and general manager Scott Fitterer having more of a say, so a project such as Penix on Day 2 could be a possibility if the Panthers cannot land a blue-chip prospect early.

Penix has some work to do in terms of velocity and decision-making. But the skills normally associated with productive NFL quarterbacks aside from arm strength are there to build upon.