The NFL playoffs are set to get under way next week but the Carolina Panthers will not be partaking in any of the postseason festivities that fill teams with dreams and visions of grandeur. Instead, they will be staying home to re-access the 2012 season and figure out what went wrong and what can be done to correct the mistakes of the past and be a legitimate threat next year.
Every offseason begins after the Super Bowl and ends with the opening of training camp in the summer. It is during this time that Carolina will need to start putting together the pieces and constructing a winning formula to achieve the perfect offseason.
The blueprint for the perfect offseason is different for each team as no two teams are alike. Those teams who make the right moves and preparations between February and July can be primed for a playoff run regardless of how they finished the previous year. Take into account the Indianapolis Colts and Washington Redskins; both teams held the top two draft picks (though Washington did trade up) in April and are now headed to the postseason.
What will the Panthers need to do to draw up their perfect offseason blueprint? The next five slides will outline the decisions and moves needed for them to put together a perfect offseason in preparation for the perfect season...or at least reach the playoffs.