Pending unrestricted free agent made the most of a little more national attention, with another standout performance.
Samuel finished the game with a career highs in rushing (52), receiving (106) and scrimmage yards (158).
He also had a career-best 45-yard rush, the longest run of the year for the Panthers (eclipsing the 28-yarder by Jeremy Chinn on a fake punt against the Falcons).
All that could be pricing him out of a return to Carolina, but Samuel has proven his value this year, on a team which also features a pair of 1,000-yard receivers.
YOUNG MAKES HIS CASE
Washington defensive end Chase Young was already the favorite to win defensive rookie of the year, and Sunday’s game likely cemented that.
Young had a strip-sack-fumble, and forced an interception by hitting Teddy Bridgewater’s arm (which was initially ruled a fumble by the scorers in Washington, despite the fact the ball flew downfield and was caught in mid-air).
Chinn’s had a very good season, but even in a losing effort, the higher draft pick and bigger name showed why he’s likely going to take the award.
DEPTH AN ISSUE
Trent Scott started for injured left tackle Russell Okung again, but Scott wasn’t able to finish the game.
He left with a shoulder injury and didn’t return. Michael Schofield replaced him at left tackle and struggled with Young.
The Panthers are thin on the offensive line, and there’s not enough time to bring in reinforcements, so things could be interesting up front for the finale next week against the Saints.