5 big shocks from the Carolina Panthers initial 53-man roster

(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports) P.J. Walker
(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports) P.J. Walker /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) P.J. Walker /

Carolina Panthers go with two QBs

There had been some talk of the Carolina Panthers potentially taking through two quarterbacks onto their roster. The coaching staff was keen to look at perhaps strengthening another positional group with more questions, something they eventually decided on by waiving Will Grier during the final cuts.

This came after an intense quarterback battle with P.J. Walker for the primary backup job behind Sam Darnold. Grier arguably outperformed the former XFL MVP candidate, but his close association with Matt Rhule from his time together at Temple and gaining a competitive victory against the Detroit Lions in 2020 tipped the scales in his favor.

This is a contentious decision and something the Panthers might end up regretting. There remain some serious COVID-19 complications across the league thanks to the emergence of the delta variant, so it might be worth Carolina bringing in an additional reinforcement and stashing them on the practice squad in case the worst happens.

Grier was fighting a losing battle from the moment he arrived in Carolina. The Panthers selected the signal-caller at No. 100 overall in 2019 and after some significant struggles in two starts as a rookie, a new coaching staff came into the fold with no association to the West Virginia product.

As for Walker, his mobility and previous production made him the right choice. Although the Panthers are hoping the player doesn’t see much of the field after putting all their eggs in Darnold’s basket following his trade from the New York Jets.

Going with two quarterbacks is a bold move in this day and age. But the Panthers’ front office is aggressive enough to make further adjustments if needed.