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Buccaneers vs. Panthers preview: Will the Bucs defense hold up?

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The Bucs and Panthers play at 1:00 p.m. today.

Carolina Panthers v Tampa Bay Buccaneers Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers play the Carolina Panthers today. So it’s time for a statistical preview!

Reviewing the Cardinals’ last four games:

Car 33, NE 30 W

Car 27, Det 24 W

Phi 28, Car 23 L

Car 3, Chi 17 L

The Panthers have hit a skid in the past two games. Both the Bucs and Panthers are still in striking distance of the playoff race, but which team will be more mediocre Sunday?

Panthers Defense

The Panthers are a good defensive team on paper. Philly tore them up, but the Bears offense only scored a FG. The other 14 points were defensive scores. Tampa Bay and Jameis Winston look to be heating up offensively as they put up the most points against the Buffalo Bills, the best points against team in the league. One problem is that the Bucs’ rushing game looks to be in neutral.

Some bad news for the Bucs offense is that LB Luke Keuchly has cleared concussion protocol and could be back for Carolina.

Bucs Defense

The Bucs defense is just inconsistent, but they may be helped because the Panthers’ starting center will not be available this Sunday. ast year, the Bucs were able to dominate offenses whose starting centers were not available.

Can the Bucs defense stop the run game?

With Kwon Alexander returning last week, the run defense continued its downward spiral into futility. I do hope that the Panthers missing their starting center makes our defense look good this weekend.

Conclusion

The game to watch is the Bucs’ offense against the Panthers’ defense. What to cringe at is watching who will be mediocre between the Panthers’ offense and the Bucs’ defense. Someone has got to win this game.

Bucs 27, Panthers 20