4 crucial observations from Matt Rhule’s pre-training camp presser

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Matt Rhule
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Matt Rhule /
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Carolina Panthers
(Griffin Zetterberg-USA TODAY Sports) Baker Mayfield /

Carolina Panthers QB competition is real

After acquiring Baker Mayfield via trade from the Cleveland Browns, the Carolina Panthers immediately stated that it would be a true quarterback competition between the new arrival and Sam Darnold to see who becomes their No. 1 option in 2022.

Many perceived this as a token gesture given that Darnold is still on the books for $18.85 million fully guaranteed. The Panthers won’t want to reveal their hand in case another team comes calling over the next few weeks.

There is also the presence of Matt Corral to consider, who’ll also get an opportunity to stake a claim and boost his development en route to becoming Carolina’s long-term option under center.

Matt Rhule stated that there will be a competition between the quarterbacks. Something he hopes can elevate production and the best performer will win the job.

"“Matt Rhule says Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold will determine who is the starting quarterback. They will battle it out in camp. A true competition and the winner will start.”"

The head coach added that Mayfield has a lot of work to do regarding the playbook and integrating himself within the organization. Darnold has a head start in that regard, but his production last season was nothing short of abysmal and is the primary reason why two new signal-callers came on board.

Only time will tell. But the Panthers did not pursue Mayfield all offseason for him to be holding a clipboard against his old employers for Carolina’s season opener.