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Quick Take: Bucs-Panthers

In Brief

» Last meeting:DeAngelo Williams rushed for 152 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Panthers past the Bucs, 28-21, in Week 6.
» Streaks: Carolina has won five of the past seven meetings, and owns an 11-7 overall series edge.
» Last week: Despite knocking out Michael Turner and Matt Ryan, the Bucs suffered a dramatic 20-17 loss to the Falcons. ... The Panthers fell prey to a deluge of turnovers in a 17-6 loss to the Jets.

Keep your eye on ...Josh Freeman's poise in the pocket: Aside from a rough outing against the Saints' aggressive defense, Freeman has played with impressive composure in his first four career starts. He has shown a knack for avoiding pressure, and an ability to deliver the deep ball. His next challenge is to continue getting better every week.

Ronde Barber's veteran influence: In what has been a lost season for the Bucs, Barber has remained a force in the secondary. He has two sacks, a forced fumble and scored a special teams touchdown on a blocked punt. He is the lone holdover from Tampa Bay's 2002 Super Bowl squad, and he is a mentor for one of the league's youngest teams.

John Fox's coaching: Fox has helped Carolina achieve considerable success during his tenure, but this season has not been kind to the franchise's winningest coach. At a disappointing 4-7, it is up to Fox to make sure his team finishes out the season strong and doesn't suffer a letdown against struggling clubs like 1-10 Tampa Bay.

Did you know?

Tampa Bay's Cadillac Williams has five touchdowns in his last six games against Carolina. ... In his last three divisional road games, Bucs WR Antonio Bryant has 20 catches for 399 yards and four TDs. ... Carolina's Jonathan Stewart has 100 yards rushing in two straight games against Tampa Bay. ... Panthers WR Steve Smith has 100 yards receiving in six of his last nine games against the Bucs.

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