4 biggest challenges for the Panthers against the Buccaneers

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Matt Rhule and Teddy Bridgewater
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) Matt Rhule and Teddy Bridgewater /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images) O.J. Howard /

Covering two prolific tight ends

It’s not just the wide receivers that the Carolina Panthers need to worry about on Sunday. The Buccaneers also possess two prolific tight ends who can make things happen all over the field and this is another significant challenge they must overcome.

Rob Gronkowski might not be the player of old after coming out of retirement. But there is little doubt he could still be a player of substantial use once he fully adjusts to the rigors of the NFL once again.

He has been a favorite target of quarterback Tom Brady during their time together and the Panthers should ignore him at their peril.

The Bucs resisted temptation when it came to dealing O.J. Howard this offseason following Gronkowski’s arrival. Judging by his first outing against the Saints, the athletic tight end is going to be part of an offense that is loaded with playmakers.

Carolina’s struggles covering across the middle were there for all to see in their season opener. They were unable to stop Darren Waller from making some big plays in crucial situations and having two tight ends who can deliver the goods is going to be a substantial problem to overcome if the Panthers want to get anything out of this contest.