Carolina Panthers

Analyzing the NFL Expert’s Predictions for the Panthers and Colts

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Before each NFL season all of the NFL experts predict the regular-season records for each team and who they think will reach the Super Bowl, and ultimately be the world champion. But they are only just predictions. It’s like projections for the stock market or your company’s revenue for the year. No one really knows how well each team is going to play and that is one of the reasons why the NFL is so exciting. But when the experts make these predictions they never go back and say, “You were wrong!” Well I am going to be that guy.

The Carolina Panthers play the Indianapolis Colts tonight at Bank of America Stadium. Before each season started the experts had strong opinions about both of these teams.

What regular-season records did the NFL experts predict for the Carolina Panthers and the Indianapolis Colts?

ESPN:

Panthers – 10-6 “The Panthers return 10 of 11 starters from a defense that finished 10th in the NFL and nine of 11 starters from an offense that helped Carolina win five of the final six games in 2014. That continuity, along with a weak division and overall schedule ranked 27th in the league, should make Carolina the NFC South champion for the third straight year.” – David Newton

Colts – 13-3 “The Colts have the talent to finish with one of the best records in the NFL, and the schedule definitely favors them. Indianapolis opens the season at Buffalo instead of playing there in the dead of winter in December. The Colts get New England and Denver at home and they finish the season with two of their last three games at Lucas Oil Stadium.” – Mike Wells

 

CBS Sports:

Panthers – 8-8 “The Panthers lost top WR Kelvin Benjamin, which hurts, but this team went 5-1 in its last six games in 2014 and carries the momentum into 2015. Their first four opponents had 21 wins between them in 2014 and Cam Newton should get off to a fast start.” – Pat Kirwan

Colts – 10-6 “The offense can put up a 30 spot on any team but the defense struggles in the big games. Turnovers hurt last year but I would be surprised if that matter isn’t resolved.” – Pat Kirwan

 

Sports Illustrated:

Panthers – 9-7 “Even with second-year receiver Kelvin Benjamin lost for the season with a torn ACL, the Panthers are the most stacked team in this division. Greg Olsen may be the most underrated tight end in the NFL, and second-round pick Devin Funchess has potential as a possession receiver/TE hybrid. That’s two targets for Cam Newton in addition to second-year receiver Corey Brown, who might surprise in a bigger role.” – Doug Farrar

Colts – 11-5 “In the AFC South, the Colts are the souls of consistency. Indianapolis has posted an 11–5 regular-season record in each of the last three years, which lines up rather nicely with the three years the Colts have had Andrew Luck as their quarterback. Without a consistent pass rush, multiple elite receivers or any running game at all, the Luck-led Colts have returned to what they were in Peyton Manning’s earlier days: perennial AFC contenders.” – Doug Farrar

 

Do any of these NFL experts have a shot at being right about the Panthers and Colts this season? Let’s take a look at the beat writers for each team because they are the most involved with each franchise.

 

Analyzing Panthers’ Regular-Season Prediction:

David Newton’s Prediction 10-6 – David Newton is actually the most generous out of all the NFL experts. He has the Panthers winning 10 games and three-peating as NFC South champions. But the Panthers are only one win away from matching their win (7) total from last season, and they aren’t going to slow down anytime soon. He also had the Panthers losing to the Seattle Seahawks 20-10 and losing to the Indianapolis Colts 21-17. Well this is a different Panthers team and they showed it in their come from behind victory against the Seahawks last week. The Panthers are undefeated because they lead the NFL with 144.7 rushing yards per game, and their defense only allows 18.3 points against per game. I see them winning at least 12 games this season with help from “Mr. Clutch” Cam Newton.

 

Analyzing Colts’ Regular-Season Prediction:

Mike Wells’ Prediction 13-3 – The Indianapolis Colts only have a record of 3-4, but they still lead the weak AFC South division. The Colts were predicted by several NFL Experts to reach the Super Bowl with their talented roster. Some of their acquisitions in the offseason consisted of WR Andre Johnson, RB Frank Gore, and LB Trent Cole. But this “dream” team might still be dreaming. Their offensive line is built for the run and can’t protect quarterback Andrew Luck. Because of the lack of protection he already has 9 interceptions and a few fractured ribs. The defense isn’t helping this offense because they are allowing the other team to score 24.9 points per game, while the offense is only averaging 21.0 points per game. The Colts have a lot of injuries but it’s not a good excuse for their 3-4 record. The Colts will win their division but their record at the end of the season will be 8-8.

 

What is your regular-season record prediction for the Carolina Panthers?

 

By, Justin Raymond, Editor

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