5 bold predictions for the Carolina Panthers at Texans in Week 3

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Christian McCaffrey
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Christian McCaffrey /
2 of 6
Sam Darnold
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold /

Carolina Panthers QB Sam Darnold throws for 350 yards and 0 INTs

Sam Darnold is coming off the best passing day of his young Carolina Panthers career, throwing for 305 yards against the New Orleans Saints. The USC product has shown a good understanding of the Joe Brady offense, making sound decisions and minimizing mistakes that haunted him in his tenure with the New York Jets.

Darnold faces yet again another formidable defense. In two weeks the Houston Texans rank 20th in total defense. Gone are the days of the J.J. Watt and Wade Phillips-led units, but the new era has given up 395 and 355 total yards in two games of the short 2021 season.

The quarterback has done a great job of finding the open receivers and hitting his check-downs when the big play isn’t there. It also helps that Darnold has arguably the best all-around running back in the sport in Christian McCaffrey alongside him in the backfield.

The Panthers come into this game as the betting favorite and should have no problems in getting points up on the board. Look for Darnold to continue his stout beginning to his Carolina career and have an even better day airing the ball out than the two weeks before this one.

If Darnold manages to accomplish this, then expectations will go through the roof with plenty of time to prepare for a stern challenge at the Dallas Cowboys in Week 4.