3 winners and 3 losers from Carolina Panthers first preseason game

(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports) Troy Pride Jr.
(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports) Troy Pride Jr. /
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Carolina Panthers
(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports) P.J. Walker /

P.J. Walker – Carolina Panthers QB

Backup quarterback P.J. Walker was the starter for the Carolina Panthers in this one, playing the entire first half before Will Grier took the reigns in the second.

Still competing in a battle with Grier for the backup spot behind Sam Darnold, Walker made sure to slightly pull himself ahead in the competition with a solid showing against his former team.

Playing in just three regular-season games with one start last year when former signal-caller Teddy Bridgewater was injured for Carolina, the 26-year-old Walker looked like a much-improved quarterback on Sunday.

Before going 0-for-5 in the final drive of the first half, Walker was 10-for-16 with a touchdown to help give Carolina the lead before half-time.

Walker looked aware of the defense and had a handful of strong throws, including a pass to Terrace Marshall Jr. that went 60 yards and a 26-yard vertical completion to Shi Smith.

His lone touchdown was also a beauty to rookie tight-end Tommy Tremble.

There were still a few overthrown balls and Grier didn’t look that bad either, so this battle will be an interesting one to continue keeping an eye on. But make no mistake, the position is Walker’s to lose heading into the business end of the preparation period.