4 signs that suggest Panthers QB Sam Darnold might be a lost cause

(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold /
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Sam Darnold
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold /

There are telling signs that suggest Carolina Panthers quarterback Sam Darnold is officially a lost cause heading into the 2022 season.

Although the Carolina Panthers have done plenty to suggest they are ready to move on from Sam Darnold, recent comments from both Matt Rhule and Scott Fitterer indicate they might be willing to give the former USC star another chance. This stems from a lack of options elsewhere, a less than stellar draft class, and the fact they missed out on Deshaun Watson after refusing to meet some extortionate contract demands.

Darnold went through some severe complications after an encouraging start. Giving up three draft selections to the New York Jets and also triggering his fifth-year option has not gone as those in power anticipated and it would be a major shock if the signal-caller gets a free run to the starting job next time around.

There has unsurprisingly been little in the way of trade interest for Darnold, who is guaranteed $18.85 million in 2022. The Panthers are probably stuck with the player next season, even though additional reinforcements could be acquired that relegate him to No. 2 on the depth chart when it’s all said and done.

Rhule stated at the NFL owners’ meetings in Florida that he is expecting Darnold to take a “big leap” next time around working under Ben McAdoo. Although the new offensive coordinator was critical of the quarterback during his pre-draft evaluation process.

Without further ado, here are four telling signs that Darnold might already be a lost cause.