The whole NFL knew that the Chicago Bears were ready to trade away the top selection. The Carolina Panthers jumped in to get the first overall pick, although on Tuesday they signed another quarterback. This decision is one that makes sense to take some pressure off of their next signal-caller.

Carolina will be starting over next season. The hiring of Frank Reich as head coach was supposed to come with a retooling at quarterback as well. Having the 9th overall pick wasn’t going to be enough for all the QB-needy teams that were competing with them, so they went for the 1st selection with a risky bet.

Their future will be likely on Bryce Young or C.J. Stroud. Options like Anthony Richardson or Will Levis could also surprise. In any case, the front office moved to sign a veteran to give their young pick time to develop.

Who is the new quarterback of the Carolina Panthers?

There are interesting quarterbacks in free agency that could work as a bridge choice for those teams picking a rookie that isn’t ready to play right away. Carolina were a franchise to pay attention to in that market for the trade they just made, so their recent decision made sense to protect their most important investment.

The Panthers just signed Andy Dalton as a free agent. Dalton has 12 years of experience in the league in a career that started with nine seasons in the Cincinnati Bengals. He was also a starter for the Dallas Cowboys in 2020, and the Bears in 2021 before Justin Fields took over as QB. His recent stint was starting 14 games for the New Orleans Saints last year.

Andy Dalton’s contract with the Carolina Panthers

Knowing they will be having a starting quarterback in his rookie contract gives the Carolina Panthers a lot of flexibility. This advantage was used to get one of the best backup quarterbacks in the league for all the experience he has. Dalton signed a two-year deal worth 10 million dollars with the Panthers, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN. It also includes eight million fully guaranteed, could be up to 17 million with incentives.