5 big takeaways from the Carolina Panthers win vs. NY Jets in Week 1

(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Brian Burns
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Brian Burns /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold /

Carolina Panthers QB Sam Darnold showed flashes

Sam Darnold played down the talk of this being a revenge game against his former team.
However, the former USC Trojan must have been smiling inside at the struggles of a New York Jets offensive line that gave him so little protection during his time at MetLife Stadium.

Darnold ended the game with a stat line of 24-35 for 279 yards and two total touchdowns. He showed some signs of nerves early as he did in the preseason finale against Pittsburgh Steelers, which wasn’t unexpected in the circumstances.

The former first-round pick missed two open touchdown throws to Ian Thomas and Terrace Marshall Jr., and then fumbled the ball after colliding with full-back Giovanni Ricci in a crucial red-zone situation.

However, Darnold settled into his work spreading the field well hitting his former teammate Robby Anderson with a deep ball for six, something Carolina Panthers fans have been crying out to see, and then running in his sixth career rushing score at the end of the half.

The drop in the second half coincided with the Panthers’ line failing to protect Darnold.

During the offseason, a big thing was made of his “happy feet” during his time at the Jets constantly throwing with his feet not set. For the most part today, we didn’t see this with Darnold content to stay in the pocket and potentially take a hit to find his man.