The No. 1 pick in April’s NFL draft, Bryce Young, took his first snaps with the first-team on Thursday and moved into the QB1 role for the Panthers, coach Frank Reich told reporters Thursday.
“It’s just the next step,” Reich said at organized team activities. “There’s really nothing to say other than, ‘Hey, we just wanted to move him up this week.’”
Reich added that Young has watched Andy Dalton with the first-team for several weeks and said it was “really good” for him. Dalton, a 12-year veteran, was listed atop the team’s depth chart before Young’s ascension. He also noted this was the timeline he and general manager Scott Fitterer envisioned when they drafted the former Alabama signal-caller, per ESPN.
However, when Reich was asked when he’ll feel comfortable naming Young as the team’s Week 1 starter, he gave a resounding answer.
“Not yet,” Reich said, per The Athletic. “He’s showing everything you want to see. But this goes back to even the draft decision—you don’t make a decision until you have to make it. We’re just giving him and our team the opportunity to get better and to earn that starting role.”
This is the next step in Young eventually taking the reigns for the team, but not the final one.