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ESPN tabs Pitt quarterback Nathan Peterman as team's most important player

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

A few weeks ago, CBS Sports named Pitt quarterback as one of the most irreplaceable players in the country because of the team's inexperience behind him. ESPN put a similar list for the ACC and it was little surprise that Peterman topped the list for the Panthers:

In his first season at Pitt as a graduate transfer from Tennessee, Peterman was solid but unspectacular. Yes, he threw for 20 TDs, but his yards per attempt and yards per completion were both in the bottom half of ACC QBs. Peterman will have more pressure on him with top receiver Tyler Boyd (926 yards in 12 games) off to the NFL, so he'll need to find ways to make plays downfield to complement Pitt's top rushing attack.

We've been through this all before, but while Pitt has options at quarterback behind him, they are extremely light on experience with the departure of Chad Voytik and, in the previous year (and to a much lesser extent), Trey Anderson. Pitt enters this year with only one other quarterback on the roster with any experience - and that's senior Manny Stocker, a recently converted wide receiver who hasn't been under center for a D-I team since 2012 as a true freshman.

Quarterbacks are often the most difficult player for teams to replace and that's especially true for the Panthers this year. Pitt may be a run heavy offense with two returning backs who have rushed for at least 1,000 yards in the past two seasons, but there's little question that any sort of a blow to Peterman would pose a significant problem for the team.

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