Carolina Panthers: Week 7 awards in loss at the Saints

(Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports) Teddy Bridgewater
(Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports) Teddy Bridgewater /
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Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Curtis Samuel
Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Curtis Samuel /

Carolina Panthers Awards: Curtis Samuel – Underrated Player of the Game

Robby Anderson and D.J. Moore might lead the way for the Carolina Panthers receiving unit, but Curtis Samuel continues to show up in critical moments.

Samuel’s chemistry has blossomed with Teddy Bridgewater as he’s become easily one of his favorite targets on third downs. Heading into the game, the receiver had 11 third-down catches for first downs, tied for first in the NFL.

The wideout had two clutch third-down catches in the first half and a third after the break to bring his total to 14 on the season. Samuel might be overshadowed by Anderson and Moore, but his continuing to make clutch plays game after the game makes him a vital player for the Panthers.

It might not seem like it, but Samuel mattered for the Panthers offense in yesterday’s game and this will continue as the season progresses. The combination of two-star players in front of him and the player’s ability to produce during vital moments in games that goes overlooked makes him the perfect candidate for the game’s underrated player.

Sooner or later, though, Samuel will be well respected as his role in the Panthers’ offense is crucial to Carolina winning games moving forward. How he copes with the extra attention coming his way might just see him earn some big-money next spring in free agency.