CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Sam Darnold might or might not become a great quarterback for the Carolina Panthers, but he made it clear during an impromptu drawing session on Thursday that he shouldn’t quit his day job to become an artist.
At least not a serious one.
Darnold’s drawing of the team logo has become the team’s “new profile picture” on its Twitter and Instagram accounts. It’s not nearly as ferocious-looking as the actual logo and the neck is funny-long, but it’s at least a close resemblance.
The drawing became such an overnight hit that the Panthers, who became known for specialty T-shirts when Ron Rivera was the head coach, suggested Darnold’s drawing might look good on a T-shirt.
Should we make this a shirt?— Carolina Panthers (@Panthers) May 7, 2021
Let us know 🤔 pic.twitter.com/kKT4JND4GZ
They also made a contest out of it.
Drop the letter of your favorite logo!— Carolina Panthers (@Panthers) May 6, 2021
We'll make the one with the most votes our profile picture 👀 pic.twitter.com/VGNidfQiws
One fan took it to another level, putting the logo on a helmet and saying, “If the Panthers do not roll this helmet out at least once this year I will be devastated."
The drawing took on a life of its own after a session with the Panthers' social media team that began with asking Darnold on camera to “draw some things."
Darnold drew a rustic, sticklike picture of the sun.
He then was asked to draw a picture of a bear, to which Darnold joking responded, “Sir Purr?" If anything, this showed Darnold’s knowledge of the gaffe wide receiver Robby Anderson made last year when during a game he mistook the team mascot for a bear.
We call this art 🖼️ pic.twitter.com/bMAZVCyus1— Carolina Panthers (@Panthers) May 6, 2021
“That’s good, right?" said Darnold, laughing at his drawing.
Darnold then was asked to draw the team logo. His expression got a little more intense as he studied the logo that was in the room, supposedly to be as accurate as possible.
Upon completion, he raised his hands like an official signaling a touchdown.
Touchdowns are what coach Matt Rhule and his staff envisioned last month when they traded three draft picks to the New York Jets for Darnold, the third pick of the 2018 draft.
They’re also trying to temper expectations for Darnold, who became expendable in New York after going 13-25 in three seasons.
“All I want Sam to do is just take it one day at a time," Rhule said after last weekend’s NFL draft. “Everything for him doesn’t have to be a referendum on whether he’s a great quarterback or not. He just needs to come into the building and work every day."
And apparently, on occasion, draw.