4 Panthers players crucial to potential shock NFC South title challenge

(Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports) Shaq Thompson
(Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports) Shaq Thompson /
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Carolina Panthers
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) PJ Walker /

PJ Walker – Carolina Panthers QB

Well, raise your hand if you had PJ Walker starting for the Carolina Panthers while a healthy Baker Mayfield sits on the bench. This has been another unpredictable year and the situation under center is another in a long line of “what will happen next” moments.

After a painful performance against the Los Angeles Rams in which the quarterback seemed allergic to throwing downfield, Walker bounced back in a big way. While there was nothing necessarily spectacular about the former XFL star’s performance, there wasn’t anything to really complain about either.

Walker found his targets, protected the football, and put the team on his shoulders when called upon to do so. What more could you ask for?

There were even a couple of truly elite downfield throws by Walker in Week 7 as well. Both of which were touchdown receptions.

One on a dart to the back of the endzone where only D.J. Moore could haul in the ball and the other to find a wide-open Tommy Tremble lumbering toward the goal line behind the defense.

Walker needs to keep this style of play up and not try to do too much against the Atlanta Falcons as that is where backup turned starter could get into trouble. The signal-caller doesn’t need to win the game, but instead not lose it and the Panthers will be in a fairly good position.

As long as Walker keeps the mistakes to a minimum and gets the ball in the hands of the team’s playmakers, this has the making of a surprising string of games for the Panthers.

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