Matt Corral Is Left With Serious Unknowns As A Rookie
After the 2022 NFL Draft, some Carolina Panthers fans were thinking Matt Corral could be the future of the team.
Carolina took him in the third round as a move many would believe signaled the end for Sam Darnold.
However, that end isn’t coming at the hands of Corral in 2022.
It’s coming at the hands of Baker Mayfield, who the team got on Monday via a trade with the Cleveland Browns.
The move clearly pushes Corral down to third string, if the team keeps Darnold this season.
But that isn’t the only thing that makes this trade something that puts him in an unknown position as a rookie.
Corral May Never Take Over In Carolina If Mayfield Is Successful
While the term “successful” can be used loosely here, there would be at least some standard of success needed in Carolina.
I like Carolina, like them since Like 03. What I want the fans to understand is that if Baker Mayfield doesn’t succeed or meet y’all expectations just know we tried to tell y’all.
— Pain.. (@WhoKnowsTy) July 7, 2022
With the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New Orleans Saints having good teams, no one is looking for Carolina to win the NFC South.
So Mayfield doesn’t have to win the division for his first season with the Panthers to be successful.
However, he would need to at least give Carolina a winning season .
If he were to make the playoffs by some miracle, it would keep him and head coach Matt Rhule in Carolina.
But it would also keep Corral behind the former first-round pick.
While Mayfield doesn’t have to do much to be successful in Carolina his first year, he needs to do something if he wants them to re-sign him.
That’s what puts Corral in that grey area with Carolina.
He might know that the quarterbacks ahead of him have contracts expiring in 2023.
However, what he doesn’t know is if Carolina will extend those contracts after the 2022 season.
Could Mayfield Be A Leader In Carolina?
If Carolina wants to win any games this season, they need their quarterback to be a leader.
However, with how Mayfield has acted in the past, it’s doubtful he can be that leader for them.
Baker Mayfield is going to the Carolina Panthers. Ok. How is that going to change the reports that he’s “immature”? He’s been that way since his college days at Oklahoma. It’s also probably one of many reasons why things didn’t work out with the Cleveland Browns.
— ♿ 🇺🇲 ✝️ The Mr. Tuttle ✝️ 🇺🇲 ♿ (@TuttlePatriarch) July 7, 2022
If he can’t show maturity in the locker room, or have the support of his teammates, it could end badly for him in Carolina.
But that ending would be a new beginning for Corral, who’s left waiting in the wings.
This means the future of him rests on how Mayfield leads the team and how his team reacts to him.
If he can’t do the things required to help his team and teammates, the ball might go to the rookie quarterback.
However, that still might not happen until next season, when both Darnold and Mayfield’s contracts are up.
So until then, the rookie quarterback needs to sit back and watch things unfold in Carolina.
While he might not know when, or if, he will start, he has a chance with the two quarterbacks ahead of him.
Their track record of lackluster play and inability to lead a team plays into the hands of the rookie QB.
That unknown future for the rookie QB will get clearer by the middle of the NFL regular season.