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Panthers QB Sam Darnold will be out “at least 4 weeks”

We break down the Wednesday news that Sam Darnold will be out at least 4 weeks with fractured shoulder

Carolina Panthers quarterback Sam Darnold looks to pass as New England Patriots outside linebacker Matt Judon and middle linebacker Kyle Van Noy pressure in the third quarter at Bank of America Stadium. Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Wednesday update: Head coach Matt Rhule told reporters on Wednesday that Sam Darnold will miss at least four weeks, per Darin Gantt. This information is consistent with reports and we’ll see how P.J. Walker can do in the meantime.

Tuesday update: Darnold has a fractured scapula that “will most likely lead to Darnold missing several weeks,” per Ian Rapoport. Backup quarterback PJ Walker will take over the starting role.

The Carolina Panthers are in a free fall and the play of their quarterback is the main reason. Sam Darnold started the season well, but quickly returned to his old turnover laden ways. A concussion last week along with a shoulder injury had him as very questionable going into Week 9. His shoulder didn’t get any better after playing a full NFL game, and head coach Matt Rhule says that Darnold will receive an MRI on his shoulder, per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

We’ll need to wait on the MRI results, but with how poorly Darnold has been playing, getting him completely healthy is likely a good idea. If he is held back this week against the Cardinals, P.J. Walker would get the start. Walker has seen some time this season and it hasn’t been pretty.

Fantasy football implications

Darnold saw his fantasy value plummet after a solid start to the season. Walker has some wheels that add some upside, but his only value is speculative in dynasty leagues. Outside of Christian McCaffrey, most of the Panthers fantasy value has taken a hit even before this injury.