5 big talking points from the Panthers win at the Falcons in Week 8

Luke Gray
(Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports) Carolina Panthers defense
(Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports) Carolina Panthers defense /
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Carolina Panthers
(Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold /

Carolina Panthers QB Sam Darnold responded well

This was probably the biggest game of Sam Darnold’s career.

A lot was on the line for Darnold this week after being benched in the embarrassing loss at the New York Giants that resulted in trade talk surrounding Deshaun Watson intensifying.

While he didn’t set the world alight, Darnold did the basics right.

The signal-caller ended the game completing 13 of 24 passes for 129 yards. He was once again not helped by drops from his receivers, and also a tough call from the refs took away a potential touchdown from Darnold to D.J. Moore on a great throw.

Most importantly, Darnold had a turnover-free game. We also saw the return of his impact in the run game with 8 carries for 66 yards.

This came at a price, with the player knocked out of the game late with a concussion.

Carolina Panthers: 5 crucial observations from Sam Darnold’s performance at the Falcons. light. Related Story

Whether Darnold is the guy moving forward remains to be seen and the severity of this injury needs to be taken into account. But he put his body on the line late to try and get the Carolina Panthers a first down when most would have slid and for that, he deserves credit.