The Carolina Panthers have kept their pokerface on throughout the quarterback competition between Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold. Even their depth chart, which listed both passers in the No. 1 slot earlier in the week, didn’t tip anything off.
But now, approximately three hours before kickoff of the 2022 preseason opener, they’ve given us a little something to work with.
As announced by the team, Mayfield will get the starting nod against the Washington Commanders on Saturday afternoon. The start will result in just the opening series for the newcomer, with Darnold prepared to take the second.
Head coach Matt Rhule said on Wednesday that he and his staff are still gathering “new evidence” and “new insights” on the battle as they inch closer to a decision.
“I think it’s an ongoing process,” he said after the last practice of training camp. “As I said—when we know, we know. If we knew for sure, we would say it and just move on with it. So when we know, we know. Every day brings new evidence. Every day brings new insights.”
The Panthers also noted that PJ Walker and rookie Matt Corral will take the remaining bulk of the exhibition contest following those first two series.