Anderson was teammates with Darnold on the New York Jets, and now they’ve been reunited in Charlotte after the Panthers traded for the young signal-caller this offseason. That chemistry, a better culture and a capable offensive coordinator in Joe Brady should serve Darnold and Anderson well.
- Robby Anderson stats (2020, Carolina Panthers): 95 receptions, 1,096 yards, 3 touchdowns
Despite entering the NFL as an undrafted free agent out of Temple — when current Panthers head coach Matt Rhule was leading the program — Anderson has found his stride as a dynamic playmaker who’s coming off his first 1,000-yard season last year.
Teddy Bridgewater‘s limited arm strength put a ceiling on what Anderson was able to accomplish in 2020. At least in terms of talent level, Darnold is superior to Bridgewater in his ability to stretch the field, and Anderson has the speed to blow the top off a defense.
Although Carolina’s offensive line is a bit of a question mark, the all-world talents of tailback Christian McCaffrey should still allow the Panthers to establish enough of a rushing attack to help them thrive off play-action passing. That’s where Darnold and Anderson could really be dangerous.
Plus, the Panthers have already picked up the fifth-year option on wideout DJ Moore’s rookie contract, and put together another reunion through the 2021 NFL Draft, selecting Terrace Marshall Jr. to join forces with ex-LSU play-caller Brady.
Between Anderson, Moore and Marshall, the future of Carolina’s receiving corps is extremely bright. Add in a 100-catch back in McCaffrey to the mix, and Darnold should absolutely play better than he did during his tenure with the Jets.