4 worst-case scenarios for the Panthers at training camp in 2021

(John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports) Terrace Marshall Jr.
(John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports) Terrace Marshall Jr. /
4 of 5
Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold /

Sam Darnold fails to adjust

It’s nor or never for Sam Darnold.

The Carolina Panthers placed a tremendous amount of faith in the quarterback after landing him from the New York Jets, which represents a significant gamble judging by the player’s time on the field so far.

It hasn’t all been bad. But the glaring spotlight of the New York media only made things worse when it wrong for Darnold under some truly inept coaching thanks to Adam Gase.

The Panthers see something in Darnold. Those in power loved him coming out of college and feel they have the scheme and weapons to get him back to being productive, limiting the number of turnovers in the process.

Again, there isn’t much to suggest this is possible. So the only way is up for Darnold.

Getting off to a strong start under the microscope is absolutely crucial for Darnold. His every throw and mistake will be scrutinized heavily and a rough opening to the preparation period will only raise further doubts about his ability to get the Panthers where they want to go.

The protection in front of Darnold is another intriguing element to his performance that shouldn’t be ignored. But the weapons around the signal-caller are substantial and something he has to make the most of moving forward.