4 young Carolina Panthers players who excelled vs. Lions

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Yetur Gross-Matos
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Yetur Gross-Matos /
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Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Joey Slye /

20. 87. Final. 0. 50

Which young Carolina Panthers players showed out vs. the Lions?

Just when you thought the Carolina Panthers might actually have passed the point of no return in 2020, Matt Rhule’s men completely turned things around to get a five-game losing streak off their backs. A dominant 20-0 victory over the Detroit Lions that should’ve been more had it not been for some costly red-zone errors is something that few expected, to put it mildly.

Considering the Carolina Panthers were without some key personnel that included Teddy Bridgewater, Christian McCaffrey, Donte Jackson, and John Miller, it was an outstanding performance. They moved the chains efficiently with backup signal-caller P.J. Walker, ran the ball well with Mike Davis, and every single member of their defensive unit made a lasting impression during their first shut-out success since 2015.

One of the more eye-catching features of the win was younger members of the roster stepping up. The Panthers made a concerted effort during the offseason to rid themselves of veteran players past their peak and although this decision has come with some expected growing pains, it’s hard not to be enthused about what we saw in Week 11.

Let’s take a look at four young Panthers players who showed out during their exceptional win at Bank of America Stadium.

Player No. 1

Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Stantley Thomas-Oliver /

Stantley Thomas-Oliver – Carolina Panthers CB

Stantley Thomas-Oliver got a lot more game time than many expected against the Lions and came up with some nice plays in coverage. This was another big step in the right direction for the 2020 seventh-round pick, who has been allowed the freedom to develop at his own pace after making Carolina’s 53-man roster with an impressive performance at training camp.

It’s easy to forget that Thomas-Oliver is relatively new to the cornerback position after making the transition from a wide receiver in college. He has all the athleticism one looks for in a competent starter at the next level and it wouldn’t be a shock to see the player get more in the way of snaps between now and the end of the campaign.