Well, according to Jake Lippe from http://gamesevensports.blogspot.com/2013/06/3-nfl-teams-poised-for-turnaround.html . The Panthers are definitely an up and coming young team so the question is when will they take the next big step. It could be this year.
(Cam) has all the tools to be a fantastic pocket passer, plus he's an extremely talented runner. Newton is not Vick, he's a legitimate quarterback that scrambles as a second option.
Although I agree with this assessment, I think that Cam was too quick to run and not decisive enough in the pocket. This probably had more to do with the porous right side of the offensive line. Hopefully with Kalil back the line should be much better at giving Cam some time to make his read.
The Panthers' receiving corps isn't great, but Steve Smith, Greg Olson, and Brandon LaFell are viable options. Wait, I just tried to tell you Brandon LaFell was good at football, I'm really sorry. The other two are actually good, I promise.
I laughed out loud at the dig on LaFell. I do feel like he is a viable option just the fourth or fifth best. I feel like another playmaker for Cam should be our top priority depending on the Gross situation. I'd rather Cam have to scramble for yards because no one is open than getting destroyed by a safety blitz on the blindside.
On defense, two players that will be key for the Panthers. Jon Beason was one of, if not the best linebacker a few years ago and he will attempt to return to form after his injury riddled 2012 season...Additionally the first round pick Star Lotulelei has the potential to be a huge steal for the Panthers. Lotulelei was considered a contender to be the top pick in the draft before a heart issue prevented him from working out at the combine and caused him to slip
I disagree. I think the key to the Panthers defense will be the safety play. Godfrey moving back to his 'natural' position of FS and the battle at SS will be paramount to controlling the middle of the field where Jimmy Graham and Tony Gonzalez will be picking up key first downs.
If the Beast goes down I think that Luke 'skywalker' Kuechly can help mask the deficiencies at LB and DT much as he did last year. I think our DE's can help cover our lack of talent in the CB position. I definitely think that the strengths of the defense can mask the weaknesses and so does Jake Lippe.
The NFC South is going to be a much improved division in 2013. The Falcons are among the best teams in the league, and the Saints and Bucs should both be much stronger than they were last year. That being said, the Panthers have one of the best young quarterbacks in the league to go along with a strong defense, and I firmly believe they will make a push for the postseason this year. Over/Under: 9.5 wins
You certainly don't have to convince us on CSR that we're going to the playoffs. I think that the right side of the line will be our weak point on offense and that our safety play will be our weakness on defense. All in all I think the over/under is fair, maybe even a little generous. I personally would take the under as I think the Panthers may barely slip in or barely miss the playoffs.
Our best years are yet to come as I think we have one of the best young talents QB, MLB, DT, and DE(Hardy) and plenty of quality vets such as Gross and Big Money. We are very close to the tipping point, if not this year than the next we should make a huge leap.