Carolina Panthers quarterback Bryce Young got an elite-level comparison before taking the field for his first official training camp practice.
The enormity of what awaits Bryce Young isn't going unnoticed by the player. Fans, coaches, and everyone associated with the Carolina Panthers are expecting big things immediately, which comes after a significant investment to bring him into the fold at No. 1 overall in the 2023 NFL Draft.
Young's taken on this responsibility with his customary commitment and poise throughout early workouts. He's been studying hard away from the team and also got a head start on camp preparations by reporting before veterans alongside other rookies over the weekend.
Celebrating his 22nd birthday as established locker room figures moved into their dorms at Wofford College on Tuesday is part of the business. Young knows football is all that matters right now and the upcoming challenges will be significant compared to the more relaxed nature of OTAs and Carolina's mandatory minicamp.
Carolina Panthers teammate compares Bryce Young to Joe Burrow
The former Alabama star got a major confidence boost from tight end Hayden Hurst during his media availability on Tuesday. Something that's been evident across his teammates from the moment Young got into the building.
Although they haven't spent much time together, the impression was immediate. When speaking via Augusta Stone from the team's website, Hurst compared his new quarterback to Joe Burrow in terms of quiet leadership and meticulous preparation that brings extra out of everybody.
"He's going to go about his business a certain way, kind of like last year when I was with Joe (Burrow). He's not in your face; he's not screaming. He's in there watching film every day. And it just makes you want to be on top of your game; you don't want to let guys like that down because you know they're going to come to practice every single day – Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, sixth day of camp, it doesn't matter – they're going to be on top of their stuff, so you better be on top of yours as well."- Hayden Hurst via Panthers.com
Hurst was around Burrow a lot last season on the Cincinnati Bengals. He became one of his favorite targets before opting to join Frank Rech's ambitious project - something that can assist Young greatly as a security blanket across the middle and in key situations.
The similarities are there in terms of career trajectory, too. Burrow was a Heisman Trophy winner after his record-setting final season at LSU, which rose the fearless gun-slinger from a mid-round afterthought to the consensus No. 1 overall pick in 2020.
Burrow's shown that this was no fluke, either. He's made a Super Bowl appearance, led the Bengals to two straight AFC Championship games, and is about to reset the quarterback market with a bumper new deal as a result of his exceptional three years in the NFL to date.
That is a lofty bar for Young to aim for. He'll be focusing on himself rather than looking to emulate the accomplishments of others, but the Panthers will be doing cartwheels if their big investment reaches anything like the same level in the years ahead.
Young is well aware of how much pressure is on his shoulders. He's going above and beyond to install confidence, which can hopefully continue when the pads go on at camp.
And if Hurst's comparison proves accurate, it's all systems go.