How to watch Buccaneers vs. Panthers 2014: Time, TV schedule and live stream
Derek Anderson makes his second start of the year against Tampa Bay.
Tampa Bay entered the season with a new head coach, a fresh quarterback and high hopes. It didn’t take long for those expectations to be smashed, however. The Buccaneers lost nine of their first 10 games and haven’t been much better in the weeks since. Worse, free agent signal caller Josh McCown injured his hand and missed several games. In his stead, Mike Glennon did little to impress, completing less than 60 percent of his passes. The team’s one shining moment during the first half of the season was a 27-24 comeback victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers.
But the Buccaneers’ problems go beyond the quarterback position. Top running back Doug Martin suffered yet another injury setback and missed several games. The one-time 1,000-yard rusher has averaged just 3 yards per carry and compiled only 273 yards on the ground. Bobby Rainey has performed only slightly better, running for 406 yards at a clip of 4.3. The issues under center and in the backfield have overshadowed what has been a productive receiving corps. Rookie Mike Evans has hauled in 57 passes for 935 yards and 10 scores. Veteran Vincent Jackson is right behind him with 861 yards.
Meanwhile, the Panthers spent most of October and all of November without winning a game. Their victory drought finally ended with a 41-10 win over the New Orleans Saints last Sunday. Quarterback Cam Newton had his best game of the season, throwing for 226 yards and a season-high three touchdowns. He added another score on the ground.
Unfortunately for Carolina, Newton was involved in a car wreck earlier this week. Newton’s car was overturned and the quarterback had to be rushed to the hospital. Ultimately, Newton escaped with only two transverse process fractures in his lower back. Newton may be able to return later this season, but he won’t play against the Buccaneers. Instead, Derek Anderson will make his second start of the season.
The Buccaneers enter Sunday with a record of 2-11. The Panthers come in at 4-8-1.
How to watch
Where: Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte
When: 1 p.m. ET
Announcers: Dick Stockton, Brady Quinn, Kristina Pink
The Panthers are 3-point favorites with an over/under of 41 points, according to OddsShark.