The Panthers had to wait until the second quarter to get their first points of Sunday’s game, but things opened up for them from that point.
After the Panthers stuffed Jets running back Tevin Coleman on a fourth down run, Sam Darnold and Robby Anderson hooked up for a 57-yard touchdown against their former team. Ryan Santoso missed the extra point, but the Panthers were quickly back on the attack.
Marquis Haynes sacked Zach Wilson on a third down to force a punt and Darnold scored on a five-yard run to cap a 62-yard drive with another touchdown. Santoso was good on that extra point try and the Panthers took a 16-0 lead into halftime.
Wilson has been sacked three times behind an offensive line that looks as incapable of blocking as the ones Darnold played in front of in New York. The second overall pick of this year’s draft has thrown an interception and is just 6-of-16 for 84 yards in a rough outing.
Darnold started slowly and lost a fumble when trying to hand the ball to Christian McCaffrey, but is now 17-of-22 for 234 yards and a touchdown. McCaffrey has run for 33 yards and caught eight passes for 91 yards in his return from an injury-ruined 2020, so things are pointing in the right direction for the Panthers with 30 minutes left to play on Sunday.