Should the Carolina Panthers pursue Brian Johnson as OC in 2023?

(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) Brian Johnson
(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) Brian Johnson /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) Brian Johnson and Jalen Hurts /

Brian Johnson’s QB development

Brian Johnson’s time with the Florida Gators is a great look into what he brings to the table as a coach. The first example was Feleipe Franks was the starting quarterback for the team in 2017, registering 1,438 passing yards with nine touchdowns to eight interceptions.

Under Johnson’s tutelage, Franks once again started the 2018 season and finished with 2,457 passing yards, 24 touchdowns, and six interceptions, together with 350 rushing yards and seven scores. A very notable improvement from the player.

The success didn’t stop there. Kyle Trask put together a solid season, amassing 2,941 passing yards, 25 touchdowns, and seven picks, guiding the Gators to an 11-2 record in his first starting role.

Trask took a massive leap in 2020, going on to record 4,283 passing yards with 43 touchdowns and eight interceptions. It’s no coincidence that Johnson was awarded his historical promotion to offensive coordinator prior to that campaign.

Johnson played a significant role in the recruitment of prospect Anthony Richardson to the University of Florida, as well. Richardson is now viewed as one of the highest-ceiling quarterback prospects in the upcoming 2023 NFL Draft.

This connection is one that is impossible for fans and media to ignore. Speculation continues around who will fill the Carolina Panthers offensive coordinator position, so Johnson and Richardson could pair up once again at the next level if both join Frank Reich.