The Tampa Bay Buccaneers face the Carolina Panthers next Sunday, and they'll get to do so without facing the Panthers' top pass rusher. Charles Johnson suffered a hamstring injury against the New Orleans Saints, and head coach Ron Rivera announced today that he won't be ready to go against the Bucs on Sunday.
To compensate for Johnson's absence, the Panthers traded a sixth-round pick to the Chicago Bears for Jared Allen, according to Jay Glazer. The former All-Pro has steadily declined over the past few years. Allen had just 5.5 sacks last year and is no longer the terror he used to be, but he's still a useful player as a pass rush specialist. Allen has just two sacks in five career games against the Bucs, so if that holds, he shouldn't present a massive problem for Tampa Bay on Sunday. He'll likely be facing rookie Donovan Smith, who held up admirably against J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney this past week.
The Panthers are 3-0 and tied for the lead in the division with the Atlanta Falcons, so Sunday's game is crucial for the Bucs, if they want to stand a chance of challenging for the division title this year.