P.J. Walker will start vs. the Lions if Teddy Bridgewater can’t go.
It does appear to be a long shot, but the Carolina Panthers are reportedly going to give Teddy Bridgewater every chance to take the field for their Week 11 game against the Detroit Lions. The quarterback has been extremely limited in practice over the last few days – with his mobility becoming an increasing concern – and a leading NFL insider claims that the former first-round pick won’t be officially ruled out until he is tested pre-game.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Panthers have already taken the decision to start P.J. Walker in the event Bridgewater doesn’t come through his fitness test, which would leave his status for a hero’s return to the Minnesota Vikings in Week 12 also up in the air.
This would be a crushing blow to the signal-caller due to the esteem to which he is held in Minnesota and how hard he’s worked to get himself back to full health. But the Panthers might want to play the long game with relatively little to contend for during the remainder of the campaign.
Panthers’ QB Teddy Bridgewater wants to play Sunday against the Lions and plans to test his knee pre-game to see if he can, per sources. Bridgewater took the snaps during Saturday’s walkthrough practice. If Bridgewater doesn’t start Sunday, PJ Walker would be the expected starter
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 22, 2020
P.J. Walker is set to replace Teddy Bridgewater under center.
Schefter added that Walker was expected to suit up and take his place, which leaves Will Grier on the outside looking in. There is every chance that both signal-callers are used at some stage, but the decision to go with the former Temple standout from the outset could have huge ramifications.
There is sure to be a drop-off with Bridgewater on the sidelines. He has performed well on the whole for the Panthers in 2020 despite his obvious limitations. But the Louisville product is reportedly still eager to play following an MCL sprain suffered on a hit by Jason Pierre-Paul that cost the edge rusher $15,000.
Bridgewater is still trying to win the Cam Newton loyalists over. In truth, he may never be able to do this but finishing the season strong would give Carolina’s fanbase more reasons to be encouraged even if their eventual record doesn’t quite show it.
As for this weekend. QB1 will be hoping to do enough to convin ce the coaching staff he’s worth risking.