5 Carolina Panthers on the hot seat vs. the Buccaneers in Week 7

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) C.J. Henderson
(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images) C.J. Henderson /
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Which Carolina Panthers find themselves on the hot seat in Week 7 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Bank of America Stadium?

The games come thick and fast in the NFL. For the Carolina Panthers, every contest is one step closer to a seemingly failed campaign in 2022 unless interim head coach Steve Wilks can implement drastic changes.

Matt Rhule’s removal was anticipated and welcome in equal measure. But the same old problems haunted the Panthers in Week 6 at the Los Angeles Rams, which left little confidence that things will start getting better anytime over their remaining 11 fixtures.

Things could get worse this weekend when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers visit Bank of America Stadium. Carolina’s divisional rivals aren’t in the best of form but will see this as a get-right game against a team devoid of inspiration or confidence after a turbulent few weeks.

For some, time is running out. With this in mind, here are five Panthers firmly on the hot seat in Week 7.

Panther No. 1

Carolina Panthers
(Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports) Yetur Gross-Matos /

Yetur Gross-Matos – Carolina Panthers DE

While the defense seems to be performing at a high level in the face of some significant pressure, it appears as if Yetur Gross-Matos is not pulling his weight. The defensive end was promoted into a starting position this season in the wake of Haason Reddick’s departure, but the former second-round selection saw his snaps reduced to 49 percent in the first game under Steve Wilks in Week 6.

This is the strongest sign yet that patience is wearing thin with Gross-Matos. The Penn State product hasn’t generated any meaningful pressure opposite Brian Burns and Henry Anderson seems to be performing far better with limited reps right now.

Gross-Matos has his work cut out turning things around. If he cannot, then it might be worth the Panthers taking calls to potentially trade the No. 38 overall selection in 2020 sooner rather than later.