Victoria on the one and two. She's a big Panthers fan. It was an exciting time for her Friday at about 5 45 when the Panthers made the move, shipped a few draft picks, the way of the Chicago Bears to get the first overall pick in the draft. I'm sure Jim Zocchi felt a certain type of way and he joins us color commentated for the Panthers Radio Network.
He heard on 99.9 the fan of Raleigh all year long. Whether we agree with the move or not and some people don't agree with it, I feel like the organization needs credit for being bold for a change. This was a bold move. It's not trading up from a fourth round spot to a third round spot. This is big time so I think everybody should be excited about it. It's about as bold of a move as I think they maybe have made in franchise history as far as the trade goes. I was actually on the golf course Friday. My phone started blowing up.
I think Victoria might have been the only one who did not text me while I was playing golf on Friday to say, what did you think about the trade? And of course I have to start thinking, well which team are we talking about? Oh, it's the Panthers.
I mean it could be a college, it could be a pro, it could be whoever. Right. So anyways, I think it's, I'll say this, Chicago did well. No doubt about it. They got a hall and on the Chicago perspective, get that out of the way, they did very well in this trade for the Panthers.
They bought themselves the Willy Wonka golden ticket and they give themselves a chance. And we just, again, you never know. I'm sure they have to pick up the litter, but we've seen, you know, Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold were here last season, number one and number three in the 2018 class. You just never know for sure. It will be boom, bust or mediocrity.
So I would do really, you don't know until you get in and start playing with whoever it is. But I do think that they were in NFL draft jail at number nine, they were going to have no chance at anything better than the fifth quarterback prospect sitting still. So to me, I think this was a move they had to make Houston at two is going to go quarterback. So it makes all the sense in the world to me that they did what they had to, to get to number one, because I think most of those views, the first two potential quarterback picks are a little bit ahead of the next two in terms of just pre draft evaluation.
Right. Don't know what their careers will look like as we sit here today. It's Bryce Young and CJ Stroud ahead of everybody else.
So you had to put yourself at one because two wasn't coming off at Houston. Jim Zocchi is joining us here on the Adam Gold Show. So we just spoke with Danny Kanell before I tell you the names of the two players. And Kanell, of course, long time Florida State quarterback, New York Giant backup for a long time and now works for CBS and Sirius XM and all that. He said one of them was the safe pick and one of them was the best pick.
Who do you think that he was talking about? I'm going to venture a guess that Stroud is the the safe pick because of his height. And, you know, he brings all the typical NFL intangibles, more of a pocket guy and so forth. And I think Bryce Young brings that excitement level of being maybe better than Kyler Murray. And, you know, Murray's been OK at times. He's been sensational at times and he's been really bad at times. So it's kind of a bit bigger high to Florida ceiling range on that kind of a pick. But both are quality kids.
First of all, excellent football players, but projecting them as pros, I would say Stroud is probably the safer pick of the two. Very good. That's exactly what when we started off in the when I asked. Very good.
You know, we you know, he would have prized him when we started off talking to him. What do I get? We'll send you a coffee mug. We have coffee mugs and T-shirts.
Well, we'll send them both to we'll send the coffee mug wrapped in a T-shirt if that's OK with you. Even better. So when we started off the conversation, he said Stroud is the safe pick because of all those things that you mentioned. You know, the funny thing is, is that he will be associated with every quarterback who played at Ohio State for the last however many years. But he's not that he's not Justin Fields. Fields was the athlete who was also a quarterback. Stroud is the quarterback who the questions have all been about athleticism.
And he moved pretty well against Georgia. So a lot of people like, oh, OK, he's answered that question for us. But it's the other things that are really more quarterbacky that I think a lot of people love personally. And I think you're right. Everything. Every time I have watched Bryce Young play, he has jumped out to me as a guy who just looks the part.
He's just he just kind of tiny. And we had that. I mean, I'm not going to compare their abilities, but we just watched Baker Mayfield for part of last season, get batted passes down. So you do have to do things to create passing lanes, get him out of the pocket, take advantage of his skill set of running.
So it's there. And again, he's he's he's not going to leave the top two or three in the draft at the worst. So he'll he'll be he'll be off the board very early in Stroud. And he may be ahead of Stroud. The Panthers may pick Bryce Young.
We don't know. But I think Stroud, again, brings the accuracy, which is the same thing Bryce Young brings. I think Stroud's even got a little bit bigger arm. And, you know, we'll see a little more in his pro day. But, you know, but, you know, I think Bryce Young has an OK arm.
It's a it's a NFL arm. But I think Stroud has more effortless deep balls and outroutes and those kind of things with what we've seen. I grew up in Ohio, some Ohio State fan. I've watched way too much Big Ten and Ohio State football. And I thought by now Justin Fields would be a superstar, to be honest. We do it with the right coaching and right players around him. I still think Justin Fields could be exceptional. But I do think C.J.
Stroud can be very good. You know, again, if you're in the top, if they get him number one or Bryce Young and they end up being in the top half of the league, top third of the league in quarterback, that's all you can ask. And that'd be such a leap up. And you would take that right now, just knowing if you had like the 12th best quarterback based on just, you know, the way this league has been going. And so many busts at the top of the draft of the year. Jim Zocchi is joining us here, Panthers Radio Network. Here's the thing that they did earlier today that I think is I don't know if it's under the radar or because Aaron Rodgers is sucking all the air out of the room. But I love the move to get Hayden Hearst.
We've been I've been talking about this with having to send D.J. Moore in the deal to Chicago. They basically have no good receivers for whoever the quarterback is to throw to.
Now, we know that they'll end up with them. But Hearst is a very good pass catching tight end. All you had to do was watch the playoffs to see how he impacted the game for Cincinnati. I actually think this is a great move.
I don't know what the numbers are. You may, but I kind of love this move. No, I think it's not only a good move, but you're by Panthers standards since Greg Olson. I mean, this is like getting Travis Kelsey in this office.
Right. We had no like no production at tight end over the past couple of years. And so it's a three year deal.
But again, those things are always negotiated down if they need to be in whatever. He's 29 former first round pick, just a competent pro, the tight end who's grown into a better pass blockers. He's not just a one-dimensional catch the ball guy, but if he catches, you know, 45 passes for 500 yards, that's great.
I mean, that's all they expect. You just want some production where it's a threat. And beyond that you're in the red zone and they struggle with red zone production just to have a guy that big target tight end. That's how you do it in the NFL is when that field gets short, you need those bigger targets and just have not had anybody really competent in that position, or even as just a big bodied receiver, that's a reliable in any form over the past couple of years.
All right. They've also, they brought back Bradley Bozeman. I know they're, they're working on some other things on the offensive line. I know they resigned Shaq Thompson to an extension. What, what do you, I know I love the Von Bell signing too.
I think it's a good compliment to Jeremy Chin. So I think Scott Fitterer is checking off a lot of boxes. What is the box that he has yet to check off that you think that they have to do? Well, we still don't know who the number one running back and number one wide receiver are. So we'll, uh, we'll see. And Adam Thielen happens to be in town today visiting with his team. I don't know around the league that Adam Thielen would be viewed as a number one, but he would certainly be, uh, again, another competence, a guy who's been around. He's had great career, don't get me wrong, but at this stage of his career is just going to be a good football player. Otherwise Minnesota would still have him, you know, they've made an offer to Deontay Foreman and running back, you know, well, he'd be the lead back.
Will he accept it or will it be somebody else? You can find running backs as we know. So those are the two biggest things is just filling in the skill positions and, you know, they, again, still have second and third and two fourth round picks.
So they've got opportunities in the draft, other things in free agency still to be done. But to me at this point, I used to, I think the last time I came on your story, I said another compliment to DJ more like another number one receiver. I think DJ is good.
I think he's like a, like a, a, a low one, not like the high two, but a low one. I think they could have had even like a speedier number one guy. So I think that still stands out. Um, and then as far as the running back goes, that's, that's wide open. So if it's not Deontay Foreman, you do have Chuba Hubbard, but you're kind of otherwise starting from scratch at running back, which is then not a huge concern that they're plentiful. And then we found by picking up Deontay Foreman last year.
Yeah. You can find running backs at number, uh, number four or five, by the way, you and I are on the same wavelength when it comes to DJ more. I think if you're a really good team, if you are a contending team, he's probably your two.
Uh, and that would be fine. And he'd be a great two. I do think he is a lower end of the spectrum one, but, uh, there are people who value him a lot more than that.
Let me ask you about the potential. He hasn't been released yet. Uh, would, would Ezekiel Elliott be interesting to you? I just, uh, feel like over the last two years, he's just not been special and he was so good when he came into the league. So to me, obviously if it's like something where he's a reasonable salary cap figure guy, yeah, put them in there.
Uh, but I, I just feel like that the wheels aren't what they were before a little bit of a plotter at this point. So get injuries are caught up with him. I, he feels like a shorter lifespan running back to me. It doesn't feel like a 10 year guy in this league. So to me, if you did, it'd be a one year rental and that's how it would do Ezekiel. Yeah.
One year rental and really part of a tandem. So I don't even know if he would be, you would pair him with Chuba, but if you could get Elliott and another running back, maybe Foreman, maybe those two guys would work well together. The one thing we know that Ezekiel Elliott is excellent at is pass protection. And that would be really good for a rookie quarterback. I mean, this kind of goes without saying, if you take quarterback number one, overall, it's probably going to play right away.
No, that's what I've been telling people. People use that word bridge. I go, if you got the number one pick, there's no bridge.
There's a backup route. So when he, when he gets hurt or basically when he gets hurt, even if he's not doing well, I would play him. Cam Newton played his first game. He threw for 400 yards. This is going to be somebody who's drafted.
I like grooming a guy and letting people know the pecking order. Let him work with a once the offensive line is stout. If we had an offensive line issues, that would be different.
I would say, let's not get the kid killed. He's got a really good offensive line. All five starters are back. You'll have some weapons by the time they get done with the draft and the pre-agency. So I think, and a good coaching staff, obviously.
So I think offensively, I would, I would groom whoever it is at number one to be your guy. And Andy Dalton is the backup. And that's just how it is unless someone sprains an ankle. All right. Final thing for Jim Zocchi, and this is based on news that happened in the last hour with Aaron Rodgers, breaking the news, even though we already knew it, that he was going to the Jets in the, in the bracket of sports and entertainment.
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See capitalone.com for details. Now, because Brady's gone, so it's got to be, it's got to be. And Aaron, you see, I don't know, he's become this dramatic guy.
Everything is, you know, going into an emerging from caves four days later. And every year with Green Bay is staying or going or whatever, and he's pouting and he's breaking up with a girl and getting up with another girl. So in New York, they have all that, just every microcosm of that under the spotlight. I think it's great. I think it's actually not a bad move by New York. They, again, it's another reminder about drafting Zach Wilson, number two overall pick. Sam Darnold number three, right?
So many plots. So everyone tempers the enthusiasm of everything we've talked about and we'll see, but I think, you know, they've got Garrett Wilson, they've got skill players, so they've got a better coaching staff than they've had in previous regimes. So that's the team that I think with that quarterback, if he's all in, if he's really into it at 39, that could at least give them a good solid year or two. I don't think it'll be as bad as the Brett Barb visit there went and then far played well with Minnesota. So I just think this will be a really interesting entertainment year, but I think it'll also production-wise be inspired and probably play some really good football too. Real quick about the Favre thing, look at the first 11 games.
Favre was really good for the Jets where I believe eight and three, and then he suffered a shoulder injury, his game went down, and then the Crocs happened. And by the way, there is a Crocs store in Times Square, so I'm telling Aaron, I would tell Aaron don't go in it because then people are really going to start talking. I just think this is going to be absolute comedy when, if it doesn't go well early, it is going to be comedy in that city and on the fan in New York and on ESPN 970, whatever it is, ESPN New York, it's going to be comedy to listen to that. We'll all kind of eavesdrop because this is what we love.
We love the train wreck. I'm here for it. I think it'll be fun. And by the way, the Giants made a really good move potentially if he's healthy, and Darren Waller, Daniel Jones, our guy from Duke and Charlotte Latin High School has stepped it up over the last year from where he was and Saquon Barkley's back. So there's a competition within that city for getting on the front page that we know is very important in New York beyond the football.
So I think both teams are making some smart moves right now that will be interesting to watch from afar. All right, I lied. This is definitely the last thing I'm going to ask you because we're going to do a poll question tomorrow.
I'm going to put it up in a little bit. Who's the best quarterback in the Southeast Division? Baker Mayfield, Derek Carr, Desmond Ritter, or the yet to be drafted Panthers first round pick?
As far as opening day, it's got to be Derek Carr at this point. People forget or not, some forget, he was a very good two years ago, threw a ball over 4,000 yards and last year was a train wreck. I'm starting to think people started to need to looking at Josh McDaniel's problem.
Yeah. Wherever he goes, it didn't go well. The first time as a head coach, things are falling apart fairly steadily with the Raiders there too. So I think Derek Carr and a competent system, he's got Michael Thomas down there now. I think out of the gate, he'll be the top of a, again, a mediocre to poor quarterback in class, but he's the best of the lot.
I don't know. I'm going with the unnamed quarterback for the Panthers. Jim Zilke from the Panthers radio network. I thank you very much for your time, my friend. I'll talk to you soon. Always fun. Thanks, Adam. You got it, Jim Zilke. I just had other fun things to ask Jim.
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