The Carolina Panthers have not been to the playoffs since 2008. The upcoming game against the San Francisco 49ers will mark just the fifth time in franchise history that the Panthers have been to the playoffs, and that means the team is severely lacking in playoff experience.
Up next for the 49ers are the Carolina Panthers. Although the Panthers came to Candlestick earlier this season and beat San Francisco, the 49ers are the better team and have a very good shot at winning their second straight road playoff game.
The Carolina Panthers have a first-round bye in the upcoming playoffs and they have an extra week to prepare for whatever team may end up facing them in Bank of America Stadium. Cam Newton recently said that they don’t care who their opponent is, but the key to winning is forgetting about egos and focusing on their opponent.
The Carolina Panthers had to win the last game of the season to get the NFC South title and a first-round bye so it’s not like it was a time they could rest their players. Steve Smith had to sit out with an injury, and there were not a lot of other options for Cam Newton to rely on, but there need to be.
It’s a crazy thought, but after 16 grueling weeks in the NFL, the road to the NFC South Divisional title still goes through Atlanta, GA.
Even though Atlanta had more than 80 percent of their plays against Arizona going through the air, that’s something they want to do again against Carolina. With Carolina’s top five rushing defense, Atlanta would do well to avoid running the ball.
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The Falcons play the Carolina Panthers this weekend in Charlotte. We solicit the knowledge of ProFootballTalk.com’s Darin Gantt for a Panthers perspective.