CHARLOTTE, NC – Former XFL star PJ Walker starts at quarterback for the Carolina Panthers on Sunday against the Detroit Lions.
Walker will replace Teddy Bridgewater, who was placed on the inactive list after undergoing two rigorous pregame sessions to test the right knee that was sprained a week ago in a loss to Tampa Bay.
This will be Walker’s first NFL start. He has played twice when Bridgewater is back with injuries and completes 3-of-8 attempts on 15 yards.
He will be backed by Will Grier, a third round in 2019 that was 0-2 starting last year when Cam Newton was injured.
Walker was signed in the low season after leading the Houston Roughnecks to a 5-0 record with 1
The decision to bench Bridgewater had as much to do with protecting his left knee, which was severely damaged in 2016 when he was the starter in Minnesota, as it did his right knee. There was concern that he might put too much stress on his left knee if he was able to protect himself.
Bridgewater is expected to be back next week when the Panthers (3-7) face the Vikings.
That the Panthers are down two starters on the offensive – left tackle Russell Okung and right guard John Miller – was also a factor in sitting Bridgewater. Rhule has been clear the last few days that Bridgewater had to be able to protect himself if he was under duress.
Rhule, owner David Tepper, general manager Marty Hurney and offensive coordinator Joe Brady were among those watching Bridgewater come out twice for pre-game drills.