4 things the Panthers need to improve on despite winning run

(Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports) Yetur Gross-Matos
(Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports) Yetur Gross-Matos /
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Carolina Panthers
(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) Ian Thomas /

Getting more from the tight end position

Considering that the Atlanta Falcons had been torched by the Green Bay Packers to the tune of three touchdowns from their tight end Robert Tonyan, there was plenty of hope that this might be the game that the Carolina Panthers got some improved production in this particular area.

How wrong we were.

It proved to be another disappointing afternoon in the passing game for Ian Thomas and Chris Manhertz. They were used sparingly by offensive coordinator Joe Brady and saw just one combined target between them.

Thomas was the recipient of this target, which he failed to bring in. The former Indiana standout has just 30 receiving yards through five games and to say this was not what was expected when he assumed the role vacated by Greg Olsen would be something of an understatement.

Whether Thomas isn’t showing the coaching staff enough in practice is unclear. But something just isn’t right regarding just how the player is fitting in Carolina’s current scheme.

There were fewer expectations on Manhertz, who was always seen more as a blocking tight end and it is a job he does well. Considering how well Brady utilized players at the position during his historic season leading LSU’s college attack, it makes it all the more bizarre that Thomas, in particular, is a relative afterthought.