4 Panthers players who need to step up at Washington

(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Yetur Gross-Matos
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Yetur Gross-Matos /
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Carolina Panthers
(Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports) Matt Rhule and Teddy Bridgewater /

Sunday, Dec 27. Washington -1. 58. 4.05 PM ET. 4-10. 87. CBS. 6-8

Which Carolina Panthers players need to step up at Washington?

There might not be much to play for where the Carolina Panthers are concerned. But head coach Matt Rhule won’t allow this young roster to give anything less than 100 percent effort as the former Baylor man looks to end his first campaign coaching at the next level with some semblance of respectability.

This might be easier said than done after another confidence-sapping late defeat at the Green Bay Packers last weekend. The Carolina Panthers fell at the final hurdle once again after a much improved defensive display in the second half, which has increased doubts regarding the current direction the franchise is heading in.

Carolina made a bold and predictable move this week by firing general manager Marty Hurney, with owner David Tepper looking for a more analytical approach from any potential new arrival that is more in keeping with what Rhule is trying to install across the organization.

How ironic it would be if Ron Rivera booked Washington’s playoff berth with success over the team that fired him last year. Here are four Panthers players who need to step up to ensure this doesn’t become a reality.

Player No. 1

Carolina Panthers
(Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images) Trenton Scott /

Trenton Scott – Carolina Panthers OT

Trenton Scott could be set to start once again in the absence of veteran Pro Bowler Russell Okung. The Super Bowl-winner has endured some torrid luck with injuries in 2020 and this will probably see the Panthers move on from a player they traded for this offseason in exchange for Trai Turner.

This is a good opportunity for Scott to prove he is worthy of getting a longer deal. The Grambling State product has given up two sacks and three penalties from 304 snaps this season on his way to a modest 63.2 grade from Pro Football Focus. And he is sure to get all he can handle from the likes of Montez Sweat, Chase Young, and Ryan Kerrigan in Week 16.

A strong performance from Scott is crucial to any good fortune that comes Carolina’s way and it might even improve his chances of a longer-term stay.