CHARLOTTE, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) – Sam Darnold looked formidable in his first start of the season and a stout defensive showing led the Panthers past a futile Broncos, 23-10, at Bank of America Stadium Sunday.
Darnold’s passing game was for the most part quiet up until an impressive 52-yard connection with DJ Moore that put the Panthers (4-8) on the Broncos’ 9-yard line. They’d settle for a field goal. On the next sequence, the Panthers forced a fumble and were able to convert the turnover into 3 more points and a controlling 23-3 advantage.
Denver (3-8) finally scored its first TD of the game when Russell Wilson connected with Brandon Johnson with 3:19 to go in the 4th.
Carolina picked up the momentum on its first touch of the second half scoring behind a 70-yard drive from Darnold when Darnold recovered his own fumble in the endzone for a 17-3 lead.
The defense kept the pressure on the former Super Bowl champ Wilson for the good portion of the game Sunday with multiple balls swatted down at the line of scrimmage, multiple near-interceptions, and two fumble recoveries.
Brian Burns appeared to suffer an injury late in the 4th quarter, left the game, and went into the medical tent on the sidelines to get checked out. He returned a short time later.
Darnold finished with 164 yards on 11-of-19 completions with one TD. Wilson finished with 1 TD and 142 yards on 19-of-35 completions. He was sacked three times.
The Panthers are back in action next Sunday in Seattle against the Seahawks (4:30 p.m., Local Charlotte).
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