Frank Reich had Andrew Luck as his quarterback in his first season as a head coach in 2018. Luck, the No. 1 overall pick in 2012, earned Pro Bowl honors and led the Colts to a 10-6 record in his final season.
Luck had a surprise retirement just before the 2019 season.
Reich now holds the No. 1 overall pick after the Panthers traded with the Bears for the top selection. After trying and failing to find a long-term replacement for Luck in Indianapolis, Reich will have a top prospect to work with in Carolina.
The Panthers had not publicly acknowledged the trade until Reich exchanged text messages with Albert Breer of SI.com.
“Excited about this group of young QBs,” Reich wrote. “We think they all have strengths that make them unique and worthy of #1 pick. We have a little over a month to confirm which is the right one for our team.”
Alabama’s Bryce Young, Ohio State’s C.J. Stroud, Florida’s Anthony Richardson or Kentucky’s Will Levis are the top-rated players at the position. The Panthers’ future depends on getting it right.
Carolina has had eight starting quarterbacks the past five seasons. The Colts also started eight different signal callers the past five seasons, which is a big reason Reich no longer is in Indianapolis.