Panthers coach John Fox said he hadn't talked to WR Steve Smith since he said after the game he was "no longer an asset to the team."
He shrugged through the issue mostly, saying he'd "possibly" talk to the star wideout with the bruised feelings, who caught one pass for 4 yards Sunday.
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Asked if he could keep Smith happy in his run-first offense, Fox said: "I think so. We have going on eight years."
-- After his two-sack performance Sunday, Fox said DE Julius Peppers was excelling.
"He's played as well the last two games that I can remember," Fox said. "He's played exceptionally well."
Fox cited Peppers' "maturity" as one of he biggest reasons for his surge.
-- The Panthers haven't heard from the league on any possible punishment from the league for CB Dante Wesley, but they do have other special teams matters to address with the officiating department.
Fox said they'd send the Bucs' 97-yard kickoff return touchdown in for review, since it appeared that they used an illegal three-man wedge on that play.
It didn't help that Wesley was off the field and LB Landon Johnson was out for the play with a sore back (he returned), and that the remaining Panthers missed at least three tackles as Sammie Stroughter raced downfield.