Latest Will Levis NFL Draft Rumors Are Absurd

Georgia v Kentucky
Georgia v Kentucky / Andy Lyons/GettyImages

The Internet was abuzz on Tuesday with rumors the Carolina Panthers had decided to select Kentucky quarterback Will Levis with the first pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. Levis' odds to go No. 1 overall jumped from +4500 to +400 in a matter of hours. All of those rumors are patently ridiculous and were started by ... (wait for it) ... a thread on Reddit.

A thread on r/sportsbook claimed Levis was telling friends and family the Panthers had informed him they were taking him with the top pick. Yeah. That's what did it.

While Levis is highly likely to be a first-round pick -- and possibly be selected in the top 10 -- the Panthers making him their choice would be absolutely absurd. Carolina had the ninth pick in the first round, but sent that, plus a second-rounder, first- and second-rounders in 2024 and wide receiver D.J. Moore to the Chicago Bears to jump to the top spot. By making that move, the Panthers have to select whoever the consensus top quarterback is in their eyes -- either Ohio State's C.J. Stroud or Alabama's Bryce Young. Taking Levis would be insane.

The thing is, Levis likely would have been on the board at No. 9, or at least the Panthers could have moved up into the four to seven range to get him at a much lower trade price. If they jumped up to take a guy some experts think could fall to the middle of the first-round it would be organizational mismanagement of the highest level.

Levis has the look of a top quarterback. He's 6-foot-4 and 229 pounds, with a big arm, decent mobility and large hands. He's also built like a bodybuilder. Despite all that, Levis really struggled with consistency at Kentucky. In 2022, he complete 65.4 percent of his passes for 2,406 yards, with 19 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. Over his final two seasons, the Penn State transfer had 43 touchdowns and 23 interceptions. For a top prospect, that's a ton of passes being thrown to the wrong team.

Knocks on Levis include his lack of feel as a passer, holding the ball too long, and making poor decisions with it. He also has a tendency to stare down his intended receivers, which leads to a lot of interceptions. He might need a year or even two on the bench to become NFL-ready.

Simply put, Levis isn't the guy you mortgage your future for. That's why the rumors swirling on Tuesday are so insane. Either the Panthers are making a massive mistake or people are obsessing about a ridiculous premise.