Which Carolina Panthers players disappeared when needed most during their crucial loss at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 17?
The Carolina Panthers’ playoff hopes are officially over after a disappointing loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. A game that started so promisingly with a 14-0 lead ended up perfectly encapsulating the 2022 campaign for this franchise.
A roster with talent and so many chances they never are able to take advantage of. While the frustration is understandable, fans can take some heart from the fact Carolina was in this position, to begin with.
With the mess under Matt Rhule to start the season and a trio of starting quarterbacks all consistently failing, controlling their own destiny in Week 17 was impressive. The way things ended is beyond frustrating, but it still should be viewed as an accomplishment for a team that was supposed to be dead in October.
Steve Wilks deserves major credit for propelling the Panthers back into relevancy. While there are many decisions ahead this offseason, the interim head coach can hold his head high regardless of what comes next.
Without further ado, here are five Panthers players that disappeared at the Buccaneers on Sunday.
Player No. 1
Keith Taylor Jr. – Carolina Panthers CB
One could make the argument that Keith Taylor Jr. gave up was the most influential of Mike Evans’ three deep touchdowns on the day, getting badly beaten on a go-route that completely shifted the game’s momentum.
The Carolina Panthers secondary as a whole struggled as Tom Brady picked them apart with Evans and Chris Godwin as his primary targets. This speaks both to the lack of depth behind Jaycee Horn and how the legendary signal-caller once again rose to the occasion.
Taylor allowed a receiver that doesn’t have elite speed to get behind him and give the Buccaneers life. Another poor performance from someone whose future could be in doubt this offseason.