5 games that will define Panthers QB Baker Mayfield’s 2022 season

(Griffin Zetterberg-USA TODAY Sports) Baker Mayfield
(Griffin Zetterberg-USA TODAY Sports) Baker Mayfield /
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Carolina Panthers
(Griffin Zetterberg-USA TODAY Sports) Baker Mayfield /

Carolina Panthers vs. Atlanta Falcons – Week 10

The division rivals.

Separated by only four hours on I-85, the Atlanta Falcons are continually a thorn in the Carolina Panthers’ side. For the first time since 2007, Matt Ryan will not be leading the charge as he is now with the Indianapolis Colts following an offseason trade.

It is a foregone conclusion the Falcons will struggle this season under Marcus Mariota. But the Panthers cannot take them lightly by any stretch of the imagination.

The Falcons’ defense finished with the fewest sacks (18) and lowest quarterback pressure rate (16.7 percent) last season. Numbers that any opposing quarterback will relish.

Without a strong defensive line on the Falcons’ side, the backfield will tire early leading to an enticing second half for the Panthers’ wide receivers despite the presence of A.J. Terrell, who is the real deal.

This matchup is the Panthers’ only nationally televised game the entire nation can tune in for. Baker Mayfield will have all eyes on him against an inferior opponent.

This will be a time to shine and continue impressing the Carolina brass. But it also provides Mayfield with a chance to put himself in the shop window in case the Panthers decide to move forward with Matt Corral long-term.

Even if Mayfield is new to the Panthers, he is well aware of the rivalry and will do his part to win over the fanbase during this outing.