September. The end of summer, yes; The beginning of the new NFL season, OH yes!
Just short of seven months on from the Kansas City Chiefs regaining their Championship crown in an epic Super Bowl LVII, America’s favourite pastime roars back.
As the Chiefs signal NFL season kick-off at Arrowhead Stadium, Patrick Mahomes leads his side for Thursday Night Football against the Detroit Lions.
In looking ahead to the new term, we hark back to the 2023 Draft and what better way to stir the pot than with a QB pick?
So which franchises have seen the biggest shake-up and who hope to have made the biggest moves?
Panthers bank on Bryce
As the Carolina Panthers begin their first full season under Frank Reich, the Charlotte-based outfit have gone out on a limb this post-season.
Looking to end a six-year exodus from the playoffs, their opening pick of Bryce Young in April’s Draft at Union Station was bold.
Yet, it was also arguably the pick of the draft.
Despite concerns over his billed 5’10 frame and 204lb weight, the Philadelphia-born 22-year-old set tongues wagging at Alabama.
The Panthers are still stinging following the trade of Christian McCaffrey last term, but in RB Miles Sanders and former Lions’ WR D.J. Chark, there is cause for optimism.
Young will have sharpened tools at his disposal, however, are Jonathan Mingo and Adam Thielen necessarily an upgrade to D.J. Moore?
Carolina will need all the pieces to come together.
Houston sweet on C.J.
The second of three likely starting QB picks, C.J. Stroud’s recruitment by the Houston Texans was a bit of a no-brainer.
With little competition in the shape of the inconsistent Davis Mills and veteran Case Keenum, Stroud has a clear path in the Lone Star State.
H-Town let’s get it!!!! 🤘🏽 pic.twitter.com/VUp8th6gt0
— CJ Stroud (@CJ7STROUD) April 29, 2023
The Texans’ third first round QB pick in their history, the rookie will have multi-million dollar protection around him on the field.
As ESPN report, Houston have invested around $118millon on their offensive line, including bringing in Shaq Mason from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The same issues to affect their QBs in the past might be swerved, but can Stroud prove a cut above?
Colts hope for ‘Rich’ start
The Indianapolis Colts are also hoping for a fresh start with Anthony Richardson, despite bringing Gardner Minshew into the fold.
A capable deputy to Jalen Hurts’ at Lincoln Financial Field at the back end of last term, it is Richardson who will start the campaign in the pocket.
It is also hoped that despite just turning 21, his nasal surgery to improve breathing should aid his game.
With 26 passing and rushing TDs for Florida last season, Richardson has shown glimpses of savvy in pre-season and could be one to watch.
Very much a ‘learning on the job’ kinda guy, the Colts’ fourth pick could be very shrewd.
Two other franchises head into NFL season kick-off on the back of QB drafts, but are unlikely to feature this term.
In Nashville, Will Levis was selected by the Tennessee Titans but for now, Ryan Tannehill remains number one. Levis will spend the year learning behind the veteran, whilst also competing with Malik Willis for deputy spot.
The other team to have moved for a QB were the Lions, who plumped for Hendon Hooker in the third round. Hooker is coming off of an ACL injury and will play back-up to Jared Goff this season.