Darnold, defense lead Panthers past Texans; McCaffrey hurt

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By KRISTIE RIEKEN
AP Sports Writer

HOUSTON (AP) — Sam Darnold threw for 304 yards and ran for two touchdowns, and the Carolina Panthers eased past the Houston Texans 24-9 despite losing Christian McCaffrey to a hamstring injury early in the second quarter. The Panthers are 3-0 for the first time since 2015 when they opened the season 14-0 and reached the Super Bowl. Carolina’s top-ranked defense put the squeeze on Houston rookie Davis Mills in his first career start, sacking him four times and holding him to 168 yards passing. Mills was pressed into action after Tyrod Taylor suffered a hamstring injury last Sunday and was placed on injured reserve.

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