4 ways the Panthers can help Sam Darnold vs. the Saints in Week 2

(Photo by Mike Comer/Getty Images) Sam Darnold
(Photo by Mike Comer/Getty Images) Sam Darnold /
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Sam Darnold
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Carolina Panthers defense can help Sam Darnold

If the defense performs against the New Orleans Saints as it did last weekend, then the Carolina Panthers stand a very good chance of sticking it to their NFC South rivals. Phil Snow’s unit was nothing short of phenomenal versus the New York Jets, generating solid pressure throughout and coming up with plenty of big plays in coverage for good measure.

Keeping this up over a consistent period of games is the big test.

If they can. it’s going to help Sam Darnold an untold amount in Week 2 and beyond.

Even when the offense is struggling on occasions – as we saw in the second half on Sunday – Carolina’s athletic and explosive defensive unit can maintain a lead or ensure things remain close.

This is a potentially special group that can more than hold its own in the face of anything the NFL has to offer, which should put the Panthers in a good position more often than not.

The Saints put up 38 points on the Green Bay Packers, so they cannot be taken lightly. Jameis Winston was efficient with the football and ruthless in the red zone, which Carolina needs to counteract against an offensive line that’s missing starting center, Erik McCoy.

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One doesn’t expect things to get out of hand either way in this one. It’ll come down to fine margins and the longer Darnold is on the field, the better Carolina’s chances will be of achieving a notable victory.