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NFL World Reacts To Panthers Kicker Decision News

CHARLOTTE, NC - OCTOBER 10: Carolina Panthers helmets sit on a cart during the game between the Carolina Panthers and the Philadelphia Eagles on October 10, 2021 at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, NC. (Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

CHARLOTTE, NC - OCTOBER 10: Carolina Panthers helmets sit on a cart during the game between the Carolina Panthers and the Philadelphia Eagles on October 10, 2021 at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, NC. (Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Eddy Piñeiro missed two late opportunities to give the Carolina Panthers a Week 8 overtime victory over the Atlanta Falcons.

PJ Walker connected on a 62-yard Hail Mary touchdown to DJ Moore to tie the game with under a minute remaining, but Piñeiro botched the ensuing extra point after Moore got penalized for removing his helmet.

When the Panthers presented Piñeiro a chance for redemption in overtime, he missed a 32-yard field goal that would have ended the game. Younghoo Kim succeeded on his 41-yard try to give Atlanta a 37-34 victory.

Despite his kicker's two blunders, Panthers interim coach Steve Wilks wouldn't point the finger at Piñeiro. Per team reporter Augusta Stone, Wilks called Piñeiro a "major part" of their team and said they don't plan to seek a replacement.

"One guy did not lose this football game," Wilks said.

While some Panthers fans appreciate Wilks not throwing his player under the bus, others disagree with his assertion.

Piñeiro had made all 10 extra points and 12 of 13 field-goal tries entering Sunday's tough loss.

"It hurts," Piñeiro said in his postgame interview, per Stone. "I love this team, and I know they've got my back. I know this is not going to define me as a kicker, and everybody misses kicks. Unfortunately, mine was today, and my time was today. (I'm) going to bounce back and be ready to kick."

It's still a tough pill to swallow, as the Panthers would have improbably moved to first place in the NFC South (via a four-way tiebreaker) with a victory. Instead, they're one of four NFL teams with six losses this season.

Piñeiro will look to rebound when Carolina goes to Cincinnati the play the Bengals in Week 9.