CHARLOTTE — For the fourth time in as many years, the Carolina Panthers will have a new quarterback starting in the team’s regular season opener.
Baker Mayfield was announced as the starting quarterback on Monday by head coach Matt Rhule.
“When we started this process, we were looking at three things,” Rhule said in a statement released by the team. “Number one, mastery of the offense, number two, situational football excellence, and number three, moving the ball and getting guys involved. That’s been our focus all along.
“Baker has made a lot of improvement, a lot of growth in all three areas in a short amount of time.”
Mayfield was in competition with last year’s regular-season-opening-starter Sam Darnold for the position. Darnold and PJ Walker will remain on the roster, according to the team.
Rookie quarterback Matt Corral is likely to miss most if not all of the season after suffering a foot injury during Friday’s preseason game against the New England Patriots, the team said.
“All along, we’ve felt like we need to have a really strong quarterback room, and have every quarterback ready to play,” Rhule said. “The reality of this league is most teams will play multiple quarterbacks. Sam has worked incredibly hard, played really well for us during training camp, and will be ready to go if and when it’s needed.”
The Panthers open the season at 1 p.m. on Sept. 11 at Bank of America Stadium against Mayfield’s old team, the Cleveland Browns.
(WATCH BELOW: Darnold has TD, Mayfield solid in Panthers preseason opener)
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