SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – The Carolina Panthers reported to training camp at Wofford College Tuesday and some of the players met with the media, including Sam Darnold who talked about his new teammate and fellow quarterback Baker Mayfield.
“Me and Baker are cool,” said Darnold. “I’m sure competing and when things start rolling in training camp it’s going to be fun.”
The Panthers traded for the fifth-year quarterback and former number-one overall selection earlier in July, sending a conditional fifth-round pick in 2024 to the Cleveland Browns.
“When I heard the news I took a couple of days to decompress and kind of just absorb all the information in that I could,” Darnold said. “And I talked to coach [Matt Rhule] about it and then I reached out to Baker and told him about the little throwing session that we had…And then when he got in here, me and him have been very cordial and it’s been good so far.”
Mayfield was not available to the media Tuesday, but will speak at the team’s first training camp practice Wednesday.
“Anytime you bring someone of Baker’s, first of all his competitive level; the way he competes out there on Sundays and not only on Sundays but also on the practice field. It can only help the room and can only help the team.”
Head coach Matt Rhule stated Tuesday that their play will determine who gets the starting nod come week one. It’s a competition Darnold said he’s embraced.
“We’re going to be able to compete and have fun with it, but at the end of the day this is a business and we both take our craft and what we do very seriously. So it’s going to be very serious when that time comes to compete. But off the field and all that stuff, me and Baker are really cool.”
“I think competition’s great for everyone. No matter if it’s the quarterback or anyone else on the team. So to be able to also have that healthy competition to where me and Baker can talk about things off the field [like] what we see in defenses. All those kinds of things…I think it’s going to be great for everyone on the team to see how we compete. In our eyes, we’re both the starting quarterback for this team right now. And that’s how we’re both going to view it. And so it’s just about going out there and competing.”