Bryce Young‘s NFL career isn’t off to the greatest start. The #1 pick in the draft has lost his first three starts, while his Carolina Panthers are one of only two 0-4 teams in the NFL.
The Panthers‘ struggles mean Carolina will likely be picking toward the top of the 2024 NFL Draft — for now. According to a report Tuesday, general manager Scott Fitterer might package a high draft pick in order to give Young some help — in the form of a #1 wide receiver.
Who will Carolina target?
The most obvious player for whom Carolina could swoop is Davante Adams. The Raiders star is disgruntled, if not outright unhappy, in Las Vegas — and if the 1-3 Raiders keep losing games, he instantly becomes a trade candidate ahead of the Oct. 31 trade deadline.
It’s unknown whether Adams would be interested in going to another team stuck in a transitional phase, but the Panthers can make a competitive offer to any franchise in its search for a superstar wide receiver. Although Carolina gave up its 2024 first-round pick to Chicago in order to move up and draft Young in April, the Panthers still have their second, third, and fourth-round picks, as well as their first-round selection in 2025.
Young’s slow start
Young missed Carolina‘s Week 3 loss to the Seattle Seahawks with an ankle injury, but he made his return in Week 4 against the Minnesota Vikings. However, the rookie made a key mistake in the third quarter, as he fumbled the ball under pressure from Harrison Smith and saw DJ Wonnum return it for the decisive touchdown in a 21-13 defeat.
Young has completed 65 percent of his pass attempts for 503 yards, and he has thrown two touchdowns to two interceptions. Coach Frank Reich‘s playcalling has come into question, and the lack of star-quality talent around Young — most notably at receiver and along the offensive line — are also being viewed as obstacles to the 22-year-old’s progress to this point.
The addition of a top-tier wideout could set up Young for more success, but Carolina will need to bolster several areas of the roster around their new franchise signal-caller in order to contend while he’s on his rookie contract.