From draft day to the final loss of the season at New Orleans, the 2011-12 Carolina Panther campaign was unlike any that the young franchise had experienced.
The move to draft Auburn quarterback Cam Newton breathed new life into a team that was reeling from a three-win stinker in 2010. The buzz became reality when the Cats hit the field to begin last year’s play, as Newton proved to all of the nonbelievers that he was the real deal under center.
Veterans like Steve Smith and DeAngelo Williams had career seasons riding the wave of vitality that the young quarterback provided.
But this year, the secret is out. Cam is joined by more young talent on both sides of the ball. The vets return to finish the job. Can they do it? Can the Panthers come out of a tough division, let alone score back-to-back winning seasons for the first time in franchise history?
Here are seven bold predictions for the Carolina Panthers in this 2012 season.