4 Carolina Panthers on the hot seat entering Week 5 at the Lions

At 0-4, fingers are being pointed...

Shy Tuttle
Shy Tuttle / Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
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Miles Sanders - Carolina Panthers RB

Much will depend on how healthy Miles Sanders is and whether or not he suits up in Week 5 with a groin issue. But if he's healthy enough to participate, the running back should be expected to produce.

Sanders' early time with the Carolina Panthers hasn't gone according to plan, His latest effort - 19 rushing yards from 13 carries against the Minnesota Vikings - was a complete dud in every aspect. However, some blame also goes on the bland scheme and the offensive line's inability to generate the push needed.

The former second-round selection didn't do himself any favors by criticizing Carolina's fans for booing their team in Week 4. That was ill-advised and a battle Sanders is never going to win, especially given the way he's performed following his big-money move from the Philadelphia Eagles in free agency.

It'll be tough for the Panthers to get the run game going at the Detroit Lions, who boast the league's stingiest run defense, giving up 60.8 yards per game on average. Unless Sanders is at the top of his game, it's hard to envisage a scenario where he thrives against such a formidable front seven.

Carolina sitting Sanders to allow his groin some prolonged healing time cannot be dismissed depending on how the Penn State product comes through practice. If that scenario comes to fruition, Chuba Hubbard looks like a more than able deputy based on how improvements since Matt Rhule was fired.