4 Panthers players who need to improve against the Cardinals

(Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports) Tahir Whitehead
(Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports) Tahir Whitehead /
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Carolina Panthers
(Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports) Tahir Whitehead /

Tahir Whitehead – Carolina Panthers LB

It feels like Tahir Whitehead has been in this sort of spot since the season began, but the stats and film don’t lie and it’s something that is becoming a real concern for the Carolina Panthers.

Whitehead is playing for his future in Carolina and has not made the sort of impact that the organization was expecting so far. He did have some nice moments in their Week 2 win. But he will now be tasked with keeping a close eye on star running back Kenyan Drake in the backfield and limiting his overall influence on proceedings.

This already looks to be a make-or-break game for Whitehead, who has a lowly 27.9 grade from Pro Football Focus through the first three weeks of the season. His lack of ability in coverage was well known before he even played a down for the Panthers and has so far seen the linebacker give up an 83.3 percent pass completion on balls thrown his way.

He has also missed 13.6 percent of his tackles, which is probably more concerning. Whitehead did show signs of life in Los Angeles. But there were times when you were left frustrated about his inability to come through with big plays when it mattered.

Perhaps the Panthers’ loyal fanbase was spoiled with having Luke Kuechly at the second level. There are few who could bring his sort of fire, energy, and playmaking ability. But it doesn’t appear that Whitehead is the long-term solution, at least not yet.