Phillip Walker

Carolina Panthers
Quarterback #8
Carolina Panthers
Quarterback #8

Phillip Walker News

Expected to back up Mayfield

Walker has the confidence of the Panthers coaching staff to back up Baker Mayfield while Sam Darnold (ankle) recovers from his injury suffered in Friday's preseason finale versus the Bills,

Analysis: Walker entered Friday's game after Mayfield and Darnold played the first three quarters. He completed 8 of 10 passes for 50 yards, but couldn't lead the Panthers to any points on his two drives. However, with rookie third-rounder Matt Corral (foot) out for the season and Darnold now expected to miss at least one month, Walker finds himself as Carolina's second-stringer heading into Week 1.

Aug 28, 2022 8:56 AM EST

Throws two picks

Walker completed 8 of 15 passes for 107 yards and two interceptions in Friday's 20-10 preseason loss to the Patriots. He also was sacked four times and lost a fumble.

Analysis: Walker started and alternated quarters with rookie third-rounder Matt Corral. However, with Corral suffering a foot injury during the fourth quarter, Walker was called back in late to finish the game. Although he struggled while committing three turnovers Friday, Walker's chances of making Carolina's roster increased after it was subsequently revealed that Corral could now miss the entire 2022 campaign. With Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold currently competing for the Panthers' starting job, Walker could be kept as the third option, or potentially rise to become the second-stringer in the event Darnold is traded.

Aug 21, 2022 6:58 AM EST

Expected to start Friday

Walker is expected to be the starting quarterback for Friday's preseason matchup with the Patriots, Jeremy Fowler of reports.

Analysis: The Panthers are playing mostly second and third string players Friday night, leaving Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold on the bench while they battle for the regular season starting spot. Walker will enter the 2022 campaign as the third option at quarterback behind Mayfield and Darnold, getting additional reps in the team's second preseason contest.

Aug 19, 2022 8:50 AM EST

Plays ahead of Corral

Walker completed 10 of 19 passes for 136 yards in Saturday's 23-21 preseason win over the Commanders.

Analysis: Walker somewhat surprisingly entered the contest ahead of rookie third-rounder Matt Corral, making him the third Panthers quarterback used behind Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold. Given those options, Walker seems unlikely to make Carolina's regular-season roster, making his usage over a developmental option like Corral interesting to note. While Darnold could potentially be traded prior to Week 1, it should be worthwhile to track how the Panthers deploy each of their current quarterback options over the remaining two preseason contests.

Aug 14, 2022 2:37 PM EST

Inks one-year extension

Walker will sign a one-year contract extension with the Panthers on Monday, Aaron Wilson of Sportstalk 790 Houston reports.

Analysis: Walker appeared in six games for the Panthers during his second season with the team, and he completed 36 of 66 passes for 362 yards, a touchdown and an interception while rushing seven times for 13 yards. Since Sam Darnold remains under contract with Carolina for the 2022 season, Walker should compete for a backup role during the offseason.

Jan 10, 2022 9:58 AM EST

Inactive Sunday

Walker (coach's decision) is inactive Sunday against the Buccaneers. Joe Person of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: Walker will watch from the sidelines Sunday as Sam Darnold and Cam Newton see any and all of the quarterback work Sunday against the Buccaneers.

Jan 9, 2022 12:47 PM EST

Returns from COVID list

Carolina activated Walker (undisclosed) from the reserve/COVID-19 list Wednesday, Joe Person of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: Walker stands to be available for Sunday's regular-season finale against the Buccaneers, but he's unlikely to see action with both Sam Darnold and Cam Newton available. He was a healthy scratch Week 16.

Jan 5, 2022 9:42 AM EST

Placed on COVID-19 list

The Panthers placed Walker (undisclosed) on the reserve/COVID-19 list Wednesday, Darin Gantt of the Panthers' official site reports.

Analysis: Walker was a healthy scratch for Sunday's game against the Buccaneers, and he'll now be forced to isolate from the team. It's not yet clear whether he's tested positive for COVID-19, but he isn't guaranteed to suit up in Week 17 even if he's activated prior to Sunday.

Dec 29, 2021 9:57 AM EST

Goes on inactive list

Walker (coach's decision) is inactive for Sunday's game against the Buccaneers, Darin Gantt of the Panthers' official site reports.

Analysis: After starting Week 10 against the Cardinals following Sam Darnold's (shoulder) placement on injured reserve, Walker had served as Carolina's No. 2 quarterback in each of the past four games behind Cam Newton, appearing in relief in two of those contests. With Darnold having been reinstated from IR on Saturday, however, Walker drops to third on the depth chart and is unlikely to play at any point over the Panthers' final three games, so long as both Newton and Darnold stay healthy.

Dec 26, 2021 8:48 AM EST

Expected to be part of gameplan

Coach Matt Rhule said Monday that the plan is to continue to play both Walker and Cam Newton, Darin Gantt of the Panthers' official site reports.

Analysis: Walker has played exactly 15 offensive snaps in each of the last two contests, completing 50 percent of his passes for 162 passing yards, two interceptions and one touchdown. Rhule reiterated after the 29-21 loss that Cam Newton remains the starting quarterback, but he won't hesitate to give Walker a chance if the offense is struggling, which it has during the past two games. Nonetheless, as long as Newton remains in the picture, Walker's fantasy potential is hindered. Both signal-callers face an interesting test in Week 15 as the Panthers will travel to Buffalo to face a struggling Bills defense.

Dec 13, 2021 10:43 AM EST

Mixed bag as in-game replacement

Walker took over for an ineffective Cam Newton with 6:10 remaining in the Panthers' 29-21 loss to the Falcons on Sunday and completed six of 12 passes for 75 yards with a touchdown and an interception while losing five yards on two rushes. He also committed a fumble but recovered.

Analysis: Walker wasn't able to fare much better than the man he replaced under center, but he did manage to lead a six-play, 51-yard scoring march late in the fourth quarter that he capped off with a five-yard touchdown pass to Robby Anderson. David Newton of reports coach Matt Rhule confirmed after the game that Newton was still the starter, but as was made clear Sunday, he likely won't hesitate to make a switch if things start to go south in Week 15 on the road against the Bills.

Dec 12, 2021 2:59 PM EST

Will operate as backup Sunday

Coach Matt Rhule reiterated Wednesday that Cam Newton is the starting quarterback, but Walker will play if he can help the Panthers win, David Newton of reports.

Analysis: Walker replaced the ineffective Newton with just over 10 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter with Carolina training by 20 points. Operating in hurry-up mode, Walker had difficulties of his own, throwing a pick and conceding four sacks. Coming out of the bye, Newton remains the starter, but Walker will be available if the offense is stagnant once again.

Dec 8, 2021 12:15 PM EST

Replaces Newton late Sunday

Walker completed 5 of 10 passes for 87 yards and an interception in Sunday's 33-10 loss to the Dolphins.

Analysis: Walker replaced the ineffective Cam Newton with just over 10 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter and Carolina trailing by 20 points. Operating in hurry-up mode, Walker had difficulties of his own, throwing a pick while being sacked four times. With the Panthers now entering their bye week, Newton should have more time to familiarize himself with the offense, but Walker would stand to come off the bench should Newton underwhelm again.

Nov 29, 2021 6:51 AM EST

Likely to remain on bench Week 12

Walker is not scheduled to play in Sunday's game against the Dolphins, Joe Person of The Athletic reports.

Analysis: There had been talk that Walker would still see some snaps in Week 11's loss to Washington, but the Panthers ended up using only Cam Newton under center. Coach Matt Rhule clarified that in Week 12, the 26-year-old would only be used on an "as needed" basis.

Nov 26, 2021 1:30 PM EST

Could be involved as backup Week 11

Panthers head coach Matt Rhule suggested that Walker could still have a role in the team's offensive game plan Sunday against Washington, even with Cam Newton having been named Carolina's starting quarterback, Steve Reed of the Associated Press reports.

Analysis: Since Newton signed with Carolina late last week, he didn't have sufficient time to get fully up to speed with the new playbook and had a limited role behind P.J. Walker, who started in place of Sam Darnold (shoulder) and completed 22 of 29 passes for 167 yards and an interception while rushing three times for six yards and losing a fumble in the Panthers' 31-10 win over the Cardinals. Though Walker played 89 percent of the offensive snaps and was effective enough as a game manager, he ceded most of the high-value goal-line work to Newton, who rushed for a touchdown and threw for another across his eight snaps. Rhule didn't outline how exactly Walker will be used Week 11 as he moves into the backup role, but the coach noted that because Newton doesn't have some exposure to all aspects of the playbook, Walker could be sprinkled into the mix in select occasions. With that in mind, it wouldn't be surprising if Newton and Walker's snap shares are essentially flipped from Week 10, though Walker presumably wouldn't be deployed in goal-line situations like Newton was.

Nov 19, 2021 11:00 AM EST

Likely headed for backup role

Panthers head coach Matt Rhule said Monday that Cam Newton will take most of the first-team reps in practice this week, signaling that Walker will likely return to a backup role for Carolina's Week 11 matchup with Washington, Jonathan M. Alexander of The Charlotte Observer reports. "If [Newton is] ready to start, great," Rhule said. "If he's not quite ready, obviously P.J. is available."

Analysis: After Sam Darnold (shoulder) was placed on injured reserve Friday with the expectation that he'll be sidelined for the remainder of the season, Walker stepped in for his second career start over the weekend in the Panthers' 34-10 win over the Cardinals. Though the Panthers were essentially in control of the contest from opening kickoff, Walker wasn't the solid game manager that Carolina's 24-point margin of victory implied. While he completed 22 of his 29 throws, Walker averaged a weak 5.8 yards per attempt and committed two turnovers (an interception and a lost fumble). Meanwhile, Newton -- who inked a one-year deal with Carolina on Thursday -- was eased into the game plan with a limited snap count and cashed in with a touchdown through the air and on the ground. With a full week of prep in practice, the expectation is that the veteran signal-caller will take over as the team's starter moving forward as Carolina looks to keep itself in the thick of a packed NFC playoff race.

Nov 15, 2021 11:03 AM EST

Turns it over twice

Walker completed 22 of 29 passes for 167 yards and an interception in Sunday's 34-10 win over the Cardinals. He also rushed three times for six yards and lost a fumble.

Analysis: Walker started in place of Sam Darnold (shoulder), but he quickly saw fellow quarterback Cam Newton steal the spotlight. Newton began by rushing for a two-yard touchdown on Carolina's first drive, then threw a two-yard score on the next one. In his first game back with the Panthers, Newton only featured here and there, but his overall impact still trumped that of Walker, who turned it over twice despite otherwise finishing with a tidy completion percentage. Looking ahead to Week 11's matchup versus Washington, it'll be interesting to see whether Walker's familiarity with the offense will be enough for him to stave off his newfound competition from Newton to start at quarterback, as it was revealed Sunday that Darnold is unlikely to play again this season.

Nov 14, 2021 5:28 PM EST

Starting in Week 10

Walker officially will be the Panthers' starting quarterback Sunday at Arizona, Darin Gantt of the team's official site reports.

Analysis: With Sam Darnold potentially sidelined for the rest of the season due to a fractured right scapula, Walker will be given the first chance to serve as Carolina's No. 1 QB. But it could be a one-and-done situation for Walker after the Panthers brought Cam Newton back into the fold Thursday. While Newton is active Sunday, he likely won't have much more than situational work considering he only was a part of game prep for two days. In seven career appearances, Walker has completed 35 of 71 passes (49.3 percent) for 401 yards, one touchdown and five interceptions. He also has seven carries for 10 yards.

Nov 14, 2021 11:45 AM EST

Likely starting Sunday

The Panthers intend to start Walker in Sunday's game at Arizona, despite the recent signing of Cam Newton, Darin Gantt of the team's official site reports.

Analysis: After Sam Darnold sustained a broken right scapula Week 9 against the Patriots, he was given a recovery timetable of at least four weeks. Walker initially was the next man up, but Carolina opted to have a reunion with Newton on Thursday after nearly 20 months apart. According to Joe Person of The Athletic, coach Matt Rhule noted Friday it is "not very likely" that Newton plays Sunday, but his mind could be swayed by how he looks Saturday. On top of that, offensive coordinator Joe Brady said "everything's on the table" regarding Newton stepping on the field this weekend. Walker is the safer bet to be under center Sunday as Newton gets up to speed with the playbook and terminology, but it isn't yet set in stone.

Nov 12, 2021 3:18 PM EST

Still in line to start Sunday

Coach Matt Rhule said Thursday that Walker is expected to start Sunday's game at Arizona, David Newton of reports.

Analysis: In the wake of the Panthers re-signing Cam Newton, there are question marks surrounding the quarterback room in Carolina. Sam Darnold is slated to miss at least four weeks due to a fractured right scapula, leaving Walker as the in-house candidate to lead the offense in the meantime. But with Newton back in Charlotte, Walker may be afforded only one start as the former gets acclimated to a new coaching staff and playbook. Assuming Walker is under center Sunday, he'll be facing a Cardinals defense that has given up the third-best YPA (6.5) and 13 TD passes to QBs in nine games this season.

Nov 11, 2021 12:04 PM EST

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