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Power shifts occur in the NFC South more often than in any other division in the NFL. This season could be another example of that.
Pre-bounty gate and before the Drew Brees contract issues, the New Orleans Saints were the favorites to repeat as NFC South champs. With their offseason drama, and the emergence of their rivals, they'll take a backseat.
On the other side of the division, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Carolina Panthers are on the brink of playoff competition.
Cam Newton has become one of the most electrifying players in all of the NFL. The Panthers got very little national attention as a team, but that should change this season.
Newton states his improvement is "through the roof" and might get his chance to prove so. The 2011-12 rookie of the year is arguably the most dangerous dual-threat quarterback in the league, and will need to be so next season.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were the biggest winners of the offseason with their acquisitions. They addressed major areas of concern by signing offensive Carl Nicks, cornerback Eric Wright, and wide receiver Vincent Jackson.
Tampa Bay finished 10-6 two years ago and a game shy of the playoffs. With their new crop of talent gelling together, they are favorites to win the NFC South for good reason.