Extra Points: Bryce’s Big Weekend, Bengals Wanted Black Friday, More
Rookie camps were in session this weekend across the NFL, and while we touched on some of the highlights in our Rookie Camp Roundup, I saved the best for last. The No. 1 overall pick in the NFL Draft, Bryce Young, had a solid weekend by just about everyone’s accounts.
While Young will be backing up Andy Dalton when the next phase of the Panthers’ offseason program starts today, Young might not be in that role for long.
Extra Points is back, and here’s what we’ve got lined up today:
- Bryce Young impresses during Carolina’s rookie mini-camp.
- The Cincinnati Bengals wanted this Black Friday game, and all of them!
- The NFL will say goodbye to the Snyders; it can’t come soon enough.
Bryce’s Big Weekend
“I think he’s going to progress quickly in anything he does,” Panthers head coach Frank Reich said this weekend. “I think we all know that’s the kind of person he is. That’s the kind of player he is and how fast his mind thinks, and how gifted he is physically. You can just see him throwing the football out there. How easy it is for him.”
Not putting too much stock into rookie camps is probably wise. However, it’s tough to deny that Bryce Young looked the part and then some this weekend.
The Athletic’s Joseph Person highlighted a play from Saturday’s rookie camp practice as a sign of Young’s maturity: “Young slipped out of the pocket Saturday to make one of his signature, off-platform plays — rolling to his left and [zipped] a sideline pass to ex-South Carolina wideout Josh Vann.”
Reich said that Young did “every little thing right” on Saturday during his first practice with the Panthers.
“I don’t want to overdo it on the first day, but he did every little thing right,” Panthers coach Frank Reich said. “The little throws out in the flat, the little bubble screen stuff, the deep [crosser]. Just threw it with accuracy, saw it well, [and] knew where [the] guys were supposed to be. Just showed complete command.”
However, Reich cautioned that things will pick up on Monday when Young takes snaps against the veterans. Still, seeing the top overall pick looking strong in his debut this weekend is exciting. According to The Athletic’s Joseph Person, once Young started throwing on Saturday, it was nearly 20 minutes before a pass hit the ground.
Later in 7-on-7’s, Young went on another tear after his first throw fell to the ground incomplete. According to Mike Kaye of the Charlotte Observer, Young completed eight of his final 10 passes, with one incompletion coming on a stellar pass breakup from undrafted rookie cornerback Rejzohn Wright.
It’s early, but the Bryce Young hype train is full steam ahead!
Bengals Wanted Black Friday
During a conference call on Friday, NFL VP of Broadcast Planning Mike North said that the Cincinnati Bengals offered to host the Black Friday game every year. The Bengals want to have a permanent spot in the NFL’s bevy of holiday games similar to what the Lions and Cowboys have on Thanksgiving.
Instead, the NFL decided to go with the Jets and Bills in the inaugural Black Friday game. I get it. The NFL wasn’t going to pass up an opportunity to show off Aaron Rodgers playing for the Jets. Of course, it certainly helps that Josh Allen is on the other side of the coin.
However, that doesn’t mean that I like it. A large segment of NFL fans suffers from Aaron Rodgers’ fatigue after years of the annual “what will he do” offseason circus. I’m one of them. I would have rather watched Joe Burrow and the Bills square off in a rematch of last season’s AFC divisional round playoff matchup. That’s just as good a storyline for the first Black Friday game as any. But, of course, the Bills played in Cincinnati last season, so that specific matchup wouldn’t have worked. But you get the point. There’s football beyond Aaron Rodgers.
Still, the Bengals could eventually get their wish. The NFL is feeling this out, but Joe Burrow and the Bengals could become a permanent or semi-permanent fixture in that slot.
Adiós, Dan Snyder
The NFL approved Josh Harris’ bid for the Washington Commanders last week. That’s not the final step in this process, but it’s significant. One that makes this deal as good as done. There was some discussion this weekend that the NFL’s owners only approved Josh Harris because they badly want Dan Snyder out of the league. That’s a fitting end to Snyder’s tenure that many Commanders fans can empathize with.
At the end of the day, regardless of the concerns the owners might have had with Josh Harris under different circumstances, Dan Snyder’s departure is good for football.
The Athletic’s Greg Rosenstein and Larry Holder had some fun with numbers last month regarding Snyder’s tenure in D.C., and it’s worth a read.
Here are a few good ones:
- 0: Super Bowl wins.
- 27: Number of starting QBs in the Snyder era.
- 32: NFL rank for average attendance in 2022, a league-worst.
- .427: Winning percentage during Snyder’s tenure.