The Panthers are an intriguing mix of young and old, which makes them a little hard to figure.
They boast emerging stars such as Cam Newton and Luke Kuechly, productive veterans such as Steve Smith and a base of in-their-prime starters such as Charles Johnson, Ryan Kalil and Greg Olsen.
But for several reasons, they’ve underperformed in recent years, going 6-10 and 7-9, with late charges smearing deodorant over the stench of twin 2-8 starts.
There are enough parts in place that they could contend for a playoff spot, but enough could go wrong that doubts persist, which is why they’re 25th in our preseason power rankings.
You can read the full preview here, and then tell us whether we’ve ranked the Panthers appropriately in our poll below.