Panthers preparing Will Grier to make debut against Colts

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CHARLOTTE – The Panthers are preparing to make a quarterback change.

Interim head coach Perry Fewell said rookie Will Grier is getting the first-team reps at practice this week, starting on Wednesday. The third-round pick has not yet appeared in a game this season, but Fewell said Sunday's game against the Colts was targeted.

Fewell said he'll officially name a starter after evaluating Thursday's practice.

"We're trying to put Will Grier in a situation to have success," Fewell said. "We've tried to get him ready for the Indy week to play, don't know if he'll start or not. We want him to get reps with the ones so that he would have timing, voice command and see how he handled the huddle and see how he executed the plays."

Kyle Allen, who threw three interceptions in Sunday's loss to Seattle, had started every game in place of the injured Cam Newton since Week 3. Allen won five of his first six starts in 2019, but the Panthers have now lost six in a row and Allen's turnovers have played a large role.

"I spoke with Kyle, and as the pro that he is, he said, 'I'll be ready,'" Fewell said. "He'll be ready."

During preseason play, Grier completed 34-of-61 passes for 385 yards and two touchdowns along with three interceptions for a passer rating of 65.3.

"I think I've gotten a lot better, just trying to learn as much as I can," Grier said following Carolina's loss in Atlanta two weeks ago. "Without taking reps you have to be able to learn and grow and watch. I just show up to work every day and I try to get better, try to help this team."

Grier was drafted this past spring from West Virginia, where he was a two-year starter and put up big numbers for the Mountaineers, throwing for 7,354 yards and 71 touchdowns with 20 interceptions.

"He's very serious about his work. He's a smart individual," Fewell said. "In practice today, his concentration, his focus and his timing of the offense was very good."

View photos from Wednesday's practice as the Panthers prepare to take on Indianapolis in Week 16.

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