Matt Coral regrets not having an Ole Miss QB fight against the Panthers

Sweat drips from the South Carolina sun on Matt Corral as he speaks to reporters at the start of training camp on Tuesday.

Most of the discussion about the Panthers camp has focused on the quarterbacks battling for a start — Baker Mayfield, who traded the team for this summer, and Sam Darnold — but the addition also pushes Coral down the depth chart, where he can study the complex rules of the game as well.

When asked about handling the quarterback competition, Coral looked back to his college days at Ole Miss.

“I took the easy route because I felt I could play right away,” he said of his decision to go to Oxford, Miss. “Knowing what I know now and trusting my instincts and trusting my work ethic, I would have gone somewhere that would make me compete.”

As a real freshman, Coral played four games before he was late for kindergarten. He played another three years at the Ole Miss as a rookie, culminating in his junior campaign in the red shirt where he started 13 games, throws for 3,349 yards, passes 20 touchdowns and runs for 11 more.

The 23-year-old tasked Carolina with two selections (a fourth-round pick in 2022 and a third-round pick in 2023) that they used to move up to the 94th overall standings – a major commitment for a player set to be third. – Series quarterback.

According to a source with direct knowledge, general manager Scott Fetterer contacted Corral after the draft to assure him that the team’s future would remain in the position, a very real possibility given that both Mayfield and Darnold are on expired contracts.

When asked about that conversation, Coral said that while he was only in the league for a short time, he realized the NFL was in business.

He said, “You can only control what you can control and now I’m just learning the rules of the game and putting in my best.” “…There is certainly a lot to learn. I am in a hurry but I am not, if that makes sense.”

The process of learning the rules of the game is a major reason why Corral should not be expected to be a serious contender for the initial team job.

The transition from Ole Miss Lane Kiffin’s head coach system to Panthers offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo wasn’t easy even as Corral progressed well over the holiday period.

“The most important thing is to fit in (studying the rules of the game),” Coral said. He said he would get up at 5:30 in the morning and go to bed at 10 in the evening, using whatever free time he had in the day to study the material.

This study is required, according to veteran Panther players. Wide receiver DJ Moore, entering its fifth season, described the scheme as “complicated in a good way.”

“Once you get it, you get it,” he said. “If you don’t get it, you definitely won’t understand it.”

This story was originally published July 26, 2022 at 11:34 a.m.

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Varun Shankar is a freshman at the University of Maryland and trains in the athletic department at The Charlotte Observer for the summer. He is a sports editor and reporter for Maryland student newspaper The Diamondback, and a high school sports writer for The Washington Post.

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