Report: Panthers' Rhule Believes XFL Star PJ Walker Has Long-Term Future in NFL

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistNovember 29, 2020

Carolina Panthers quarterback P.J. Walker (6) during an NFL football game against the Detroit Lions, Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020, in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/Brian Westerholt)
Brian Westerholt/Associated Press

P.J. Walker held his own as the Carolina Panthers starting quarterback in Week 11, and head coach Matt Rhule thinks this is just the start for the former XFL player.

According to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports, the coaching staff thinks Walker "has a bright future ahead" in the NFL.

"This wasn't just some throwaway signing," a source said. "Matt really believes this kid can play."

Walker failed to appear in an NFL game in his first three years out of Temple, mostly spending time with the Indianapolis Colts practice squad. He finally got a chance to play for the XFL last spring, and he signed with Carolina in the offseason amid interest from six other teams.

An injury to starter Teddy Bridgewater pushed Walker to the field last Sunday, and he led the team to a 20-0 win over the Detroit Lions. The 25-year-old threw two interceptions but also added 258 passing yards and one touchdown, completing 70.6 percent of his passes.

Bridgewater is set to return in Week 12, but Walker showed his upside last start and could be a factor for Carolina going forward. The quarterback is signed through 2021 and will be a restricted free agent in 2022.

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