P.J. Walker becomes first XFL star to sign with an NFL team

Feb 22, 2020; Tampa, Florida, USA; Houston Roughnecks quarterback P.J. Walker (11) prepares to pass during an XFL game between the Houston Roughnecks and the Tampa Bay Vipers at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mary Holt-USA TODAY Sports

According to reports out of ESPN, the Carolina Panthers plan to sign XFL standout quarterback P.J. Walker.

Walker will become the first XFL player to sign with an NFL team since the league started.

This acquisition is another sign that Cam Newton’s days in Carolina are numbered, along with the signing of Teddy Bridgewater. It’s unclear if the Panthers will also draft a quarterback, but as of right now, it appears Bridgewater and Walker will compete for the starting job.

Bridgewater has the initial advantage because of his recent success with the New Orleans Saints, but Walker shouldn’t be ruled out as the potential week one starter.

New head coach Matt Rhule has a history with Walker. The quarterback started all 28 games that Rhule won as the head coach at Temple.

The pair helped Temple reach relevancy for the first time in decades when they were together from 2013-2016. They led Temple to back-to-back conference titles, the first team to win back-to-back division championships in American Athletic Conference’s history.

Walker was one of the best players in the XFL’s first season this year. He led the league in passing yards (1,338) and passing touchdowns (15), while also leading his team to a 5-0 record before the season was cut short due the coronavirus pandemic.

It’ll be interesting to see how Walker translates to the NFL. He and Bridgewater’s competition will surely be one of the top story lines to follow during training camp this year.