4 key takeaways from the Panthers win vs. Lions in Week 11
By Dean Jones
P.J. Walker played well
Teddy Bridgewater failed to prove his fitness pregame, meaning the Carolina Panthers were forced to go with P.J. Walker as their starter. The former XFL star was preferred to 2019 third-round pick Will Grier under center and his performance really caught the eye on occasions.
Walker started the game in impressive form and didn’t look overawed by the occasion. He led the Panthers on a 95-yard scoring drive to give them the lead and looked the part again after the break with some exceptional throws that eventually ended with a Curtis Samuel touchdown.
One thing that stood out considerably when watching Walker was his mobility. He was able to diagnose pressure quickly and get on the move, something which Carolina hasn’t had a tremendous amount of from Bridgewater this season.
Another element that played a leading role throughout the contest was Walker’s arm strength. The signal-caller was fearless and, more importantly, accurate with his throws down the field which benefitted D.J. Moore in particular.
There were some iffy moments. Walker threw two picks in the end zone and missed some open looks along the way. But he can look back on his first NFL start with an enormous sense of pride.
Walker eventually finished with a 70.5 percent completion percentage, 258 passing yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions. This won’t be enough to see him ahead of Bridgewater, but it locks up the primary backup role moving forward.