Matt Corral’s rookie season may be over before it could even reach the regular season. The first-year Panthers quarterback was sidelined for the final two series of Carolina’s preseason exhibition with the Patriots on Friday night after suffering an injury to his left foot. Following the contest, he was spotted leaving the locker room sporting a walking boot.
On Saturday, head coach Matt Rhule told reporters that Corral is dealing with a “significant” Lisfranc injury. Given the severity of that type of injury, that likely means his season is over.
Corral wasn’t in the running to compete with Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold for the Week 1 job under center, but he has been looked at as a possible long-term option who the organization can develop. In the event those two quarterbacks above him on the depth chart failed to meet expectations, there also could have been an outside chance that he saw the field late in the year. Now, the 2022 third-round pick out of Ole Miss will likely focus on rehab and returning to the field in some capacity in 2023.
Leading up to the injury, Corral wasn’t having a particularly sharp night. He was 9 of 15 passing for 58 yards while alternating quarters with fellow backup P.J. Walker. While playing in the fourth quarter of Carolina’s preseason opener against Washington last week, he completed just one of his nine throws for 11 yards.
If the Panthers place Corral on injured reserve in the coming days, that will ensure that he’ll sit out the entire season. This development may also have secured Walker a spot on the 53-man roster behind Mayfield and Darnold as the third-string quarterback. He was initially on the outside looking in and didn’t do himself many favors Friday, throwing two interceptions and fumbling in the end zone. Still, he does have two years of experience in Rhule’s offense, so his knowledge could be an asset as they’ll likely.