NFL 25 Dream Teams that ended up being failures: 7. 2016 Carolina Panthers
The 2016 Carolina Panthers were coming off the best season in franchise history. They lost one game on their way to the Super Bowl, and they were one mistake away from coming real close to beating Peyton Manning in the Super Bowl. It didn’t happen, and the team had to regroup and do it again the next year.
The Panthers clearly needed to make some changes in the offseason. The tackles played so terribly in the Super Bowl, and they got lucky during the season to never really face a good pass rush. However, instead of getting a new tackle, they re-signed Michael Oher to a new contract. They were getting Kelvin Benjamin back from injury. He missed all of 2015 with a torn ACL. The offense was getting a crucial weapon. He also had Devin Funchess in year two, a player who was expected to grow into his role in the NFL as a WR/TE hybrid.
The defense got weird in the offseason. It was a very public fight with superstar cornerback Josh Norman. They gave him the franchise tag, he publically fought it, they very publically released him, and he went to play for Washington. They did notice the defense was struggling, so they traded for the Bears’ Jared Allen. It made for an unfortunate end to his career, as the Panthers struggled down the stretch.
It was a devastating season for the Panthers. Newton took two steps backs. The holes that were there in 2015 were now massive in 2016. The losses piled up, and the team could not stop the avalanche. They ended the season with six wins and they obviously didn’t make the playoffs.