The Carolina Panthers have been a big story this offseason. Particularly when it comes to which quarterback will be announced as the starter for Week 1. There is going to be a pretty heated duel between Sam Darnold and the newly traded for Baker Mayfield. However, head coach Matt Rhule stated that he doesn’t plan on picking a starter for the season opener anytime soon.
Rhule said, “I’m not putting a timetable on the quarterback position until after we get back from the Patriots week. The Patriots week is a true litmus test for us. That will really show us where guys are.” To give this some background information, the Patriots game he is referring to is their second preseason matchup. Given how the preseason hasn’t begun yet, we have a couple of weeks before that decision gets made.
Panthers Keeping It Up For Grabs
Rhule has been transparent about the process though. He admitted that there isn’t a clear frontrunner at the moment. Rhule also wasn’t very happy about a recent practice for either signal caller, with each throwing interceptions. He said, “We’ve got to protect the football.”
This will certainly be an interesting topic to pay attention to as the preseason marches forward. Darnold got the start for the Panthers last season and started out 3-0. That was until they began to quickly lose games down the stretch of the season and miss the postseason entirely. Darnold also didn’t perform well whatsoever. Baker Mayfield on the other hand was pushed out of Cleveland after battling through injuries all year. Some could say that it was completely unfair what was done to him.
Personally, I believe that Mayfield is going to emerge as the winner of this competition. He’s shown in Cleveland that he can be a winner for a struggling franchise, Darnold on the other hand hasn’t done that yet.
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