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Carolina Panthers: Breaking Down Their Blueprint for Winning the NFC South

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Carolina Panthers: Breaking Down Their Blueprint for Winning the NFC South
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

The first week of the 2012 NFL season is finally upon us and that means a clean slate for everyone. The new season begins by highlighting the flaws and identifying the changes each team must make in order to contend not only within its respective division, but in it's conference as well.

The Carolina Panthers have done their share of roster moves and adjustments in an effort to correct last year's shortcomings.  Through the draft they added intelligent and talented linebacker, Luke Kuechly who seems to have a nose for the ball.  They also drafted Arkansas' Joe Adams who may bring another level of excitement to the return game. 

Carolina sought improvement through free agency too. They signed former Baltimore Ravens backup safety Haruki Nakamura to start, hopefully giving Chris Gamble much needed assistance in the secondary. 

The need for improvement resulted in the cuts of kicker Olindo Mare and Terrell McClain, both of whom spent one season in a Panthers uniform. 

Of course, personnel moves are just one piece of the puzzle.  There is a lot more involved in order to earn a playoff berth and even more work needs to be put in to win a division title. 

This slideshow will target specific areas that the Panthers need to overcome if they are to finish the regular season as NFC South champions.

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