Three players Panthers should key on against Buccaneers
This may seem a bit weird given the fact that he is a tight end, but the Carolina Panthers should make a concerted effort to stop Cameron Brate. He is a vital part of the Tampa Bay passing attack, and I do not expect that to change on Sunday. He may not put up flashy numbers every week, but he is a dependable target for quarterbacks and one that they know can produce when called upon.
On the season, Brate has 20 catches for 185 yards and four touchdowns. Per statistics from Pro Football Focus, Brate has really improved on his pass catching in the past couple of weeks. In Tampa Bay’s game against the San Francisco 49ers, he had a 70.5 hands rating. That marked the fourth time this season that he recorded a hands rating of at least 70. His 26 receiving yards were the most he recorded since Week Three against the Chicago Bears when he recorded 29. In addition to what he can do catching the ball, he is also an effective pass blocker. With a 69.3 rating on the season, he has proven to be effective in that area.
To put it simply, Brate can do it all. The Panthers need to be careful not to let him slip through the cracks. Sure, they will have to pay a lot of attention to Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson but that’s exactly what the Buccaneers will probably want. That way, Brate would have free reign to do whatever he wants on the football field. The Panthers need to be sure that they do not lose sight of him.