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Carolina Panthers start sniping after another bad loss

The Carolina Panthers have become the NFL's best team at blowing fourth-quarter leads. Sunday's effort was a new low.

The Panthers scored a touchdown to go up 11 points with just 4:34 remaining. And they still lost to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers by a touchdown in overtime.

"This one is right at the top. This is about as bad as it gets," Panthers coach Ron Rivera said. "We had every opportunity."

Joseph Person of the Charlotte Observer writes that Rivera's tenure appears to be coming to a "hasty and disappointing end."

After the game, defensive captain Thomas Davis was moved to tears. The team's best pass rusher, Charles Johnson, started to point fingers.

"Embarrassed to be a part of that last drive! Some people study and work harder than others and they get expose(d) in the game," Johnson wrote on Twitter.

Yikes. Meanwhile, wide receiver Brandon LaFell questioned the play-calling on the final drive.

"It's hard to say, but in that four-minute offense, everyone in the stadium thought we were going to run the ball," LaFell said. "It's already hard to run the ball against a good defense like this. So when you get negative plays and put yourself in third-and-long, you are kind of kicking yourself in the butt."

The Panthers now are 0-6 in games decided by seven points or less. They're also 0 for 11 on coin flips this season, according to the Observer. That's what kind of season Rivera is having.

Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.

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