Former XFL superstar for the Houston Roughnecks, PJ Walker, got some playing time this weekend in a preseason matchup against the Indianapolis Colts. Walker had been signed by the Carolina Panthers last year, and served as the backup for Teddy Bridgewater.
Now that the Panthers signed Sam Darnold in the offseason, Walker will most likely end up being his backup. However, he played quite well in his first preseason game this year, and did enough to turn some heads.
This is what you call, extended the play and it results in a huge gain for the #Panthers
— Antwan V. Staley (@antwanstaley) August 15, 2021
For example, the throw above is the type of playmaking abilities that coaches want to see. We saw PJ do this plenty of times in the XFL – using his legs to keep the play alive, and then finding someone down the field.
PJ Walker throws one up to a WIDE OPEN Cam Phillips who take it 84 yards TO THE HOUSE! Touchdown Roughnecks!! #ForTheH #XFL #TFTHIGHLIGHTS pic.twitter.com/h4KNOOUpPa
— The Football Tribune (@TribuneGridIron) February 22, 2020
He finished the day with 161 yards, averaging 7.7 yards per attempt. His most impressive throw against the Colts came on this touchdown strike to Tommy Tremble:
.@pjwalker_5 is balling out here 👀
📺: #CARvsIND on @NFLNetwork (or check local listings)
📱: https://t.co/ItciNYd3S4 pic.twitter.com/iv5c0L5CTY
— NFL (@NFL) August 15, 2021
While Sam Darnold has more NFL experience, PJ Walker has certainly proven himself capable of playing at a high level in the pros.
During last year’s season, Walker started against Detroit, leading Carolina to a 20-0 victory. He threw for 258 yards and a touchdown in the blowout win.
Of course, we are all aware of the incredible season he had in the XFL, where his Roughnecks were undefeated after five weeks of play, before the league was shut down due to the pandemic.
Only time will tell where PJ Walker ultimately ends up, but the journeyman QB should be proud of what he has accomplished so far, and hopefully he will see some action come the season.
Do you think Carolina should start PJ Walker over Sam Darnold? Is Walker worthy of being on an NFL roster? Let us know down in the comments below, or join the conversation on Discord!