4 critical observations from the Panthers win vs. Broncos in Week 12

(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Frankie Luvu
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Frankie Luvu /
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What were some critical observations from another impressive home win for the Carolina Panthers against the Denver Broncos in Week 12?

Despite fair criticism that has been leveled at the Carolina Panthers over 2022, one thing that cannot be questioned – especially under interim head coach Steve Wilks – is the heart and fight on display. Those were fully on show on Sunday as they dominated in all three facets to pile more misery on Russell Wilson and the Denver Broncos.

Sam Darnold became the fourth quarterback to see the field in some capacity this season, joining Baker Mayfield, P.J. Walker, and Jacob Eason. Little was expected of the former USC standout as he found himself going up against the league’s second-best defense, but the signal-caller acquitted himself admirably after so long away from the gridiron.

The No. 3 overall selection in 2018 finished the game 11-of-19 with 164 passing yards and a pair of touchdowns – one on the ground and one in the air. This secured Darnold a 103.8 passer rating a career-high for Darnold.

On the other side of the ball, the hapless Denver offense was completely dominated by Al Holcomb’s unit. Wilson especially struggled as he was constantly under pressure from a Panthers’ defensive front that overwhelmed all-comers at the line of scrimmage, extending their outstanding recent form en route to a comfortable triumph.

For Wilks and the Panthers, it was a third straight home win moving them to 4-8 on the season. With the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Atlanta Falcons suffering losses, Carolina is still clinging onto contention in the NFC South.

Without further ado, here are four critical observations from the Panthers’ win versus Denver in Week 12.