3 winners and 3 losers from Carolina Panthers final preseason game

(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Ryan Santoso /

Ryan Santoso – Carolina Panthers K

Kicker Ryan Santoso hasn’t even been a member of the Carolina Panthers for a full 48 hours and he’s already won the heart of many fans. For now, at least.

With the Panthers still figuring out the kicking competition with Joey Slye struggling all preseason, they traded a seventh-round pick to the New York Giants on Thursday for Santoso.

Against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Santoso hit both of his field-goal attempts, including a 52-yarder that hit the goalpost but went in. He then nailed all three of his extra-point attempts.

Meanwhile, Slye missed his one field goal attempt, creating plenty of calls for Santoso to be Carolina’s new kicker this season.

The Giants talked up Santoso big time this week to get something for him in return with Graham Gano occupying New York’s current kicker spot. He didn’t show anything to prove otherwise on Friday night.

The 6-foot-5, 260-pound kicker will likely be the lone guy at the position come Tuesday when the roster is trimmed to 53. As for Slye, it remains to be seen what his future holds and his situation is further proof of just how fragile the life of a starting kicker is in the NFL.

It might sound harsh, but that shouldn’t concern the Panthers, who are trying to build a winning roster and have no room for sentiment.