Five Heisman Winners Among Newly Announced NFL Team Captains

Three of the four 2021 Heisman finalists are 2023 NFL team captains, including 2021 winner Bryce Young (far right) as well as Kenny Pickett (second from left) and C.J. Stroud (second from right).

Heisman Trophy-winning rookie quarterback Bryce Young will start his NFL career as a team captain.

The Carolina Panther rookie and the No. 1 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft is one of six Panthers to earn team captain status ahead of the first NFL weekend. Captains were decided by a player vote.

Young, a two-time captain while at Alabama, will make his first career regular-season start at Atlanta against the Falcons with a 1 p.m. ET kickoff time.

Fellow rookie quarterback C.J. Stroud, who was a Heisman Trophy finalist with Young in 2021 as well as in 2022, was also named a team captain by the Houston Texans.

And speaking of 2021 Heisman Trophy finalists, second-year Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett is also a team captain.

So, which other Heisman winners are team captains this year? Well, including Young, there are five overall.

Third-year pro and 2020 Heisman winner DeVonta Smith is a first-time captain for the Eagles this year, one of nine on the team.

Joe Burrow (2019) was announced as a team captain for the Bengals, the fourth year in a row he has received the honor since arriving in Cincinnati. 

Kyler Murray (2018), who will miss at least the first four games to start this season while still recovering from an ACL injury he suffered last year, is among the Arizona Cardinal team captains. It is his fourth straight year as captain.

Derrick Henry (2015) is one of seven team captains for the Tennessee Titans, the fourth straight season he has received the honor.

Tampa Bay, featuring first-year Buccaneer Baker Mayfield (2017), has yet to announce captains, while the Baltimore Ravens, with Lamar Jackson (2017), announce different captains on a weekly basis.

Going back to Heisman Trophy finalists, 2020 finalists Mac Jones (New England) and Trevor Lawrence (Jacksonville) are team captains, as are 2019 finalists Jalen Hurts (Philadelphia) and Justin Fields (Chicago), 2018 finalist Tua Tagovailoa (Miami), 2015 and 2016 finalist DeShaun Watson (Cleveland) and 2011 finalist Tyrann Mathieu (New Orleans).