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Saturday, July 11, 2015, 10:02am
Panthers beat writer David Newton thinks QB Cam Newton is capable of an MVP season.
David Newton: It's not so much whether Newton is capable. He didn't win the Heisman Trophy at Auburn or win the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year at Carolina for a lack of talent. The question is this: Does Newton have the talent around him to become an MVP? Aaron Rodgers didn't win the award last season without having a solid offensive line, top receivers and a running game that takes the pressure off him. Newton needs the same.
The good news, the story points out, is Cam Newton seems to have a talent pool around him now. Wide receivers Kelvin Benjamin, Devin Funchess, Corey Brown and Ted Ginn Jr., along with tight end Greg Olsen, give him plenty of capable targets. Jonathan Stewart showed again at the end of last season that, when healthy, he's a top five back. Now, the offensive line is going to be the key. Newton will also have to become a more consistent passer. While the odds may be against him for MVP, he's capable of a solid fantasy season. Newton cracks our top-10 QBs heading into camps, coming in eighth with an ADP of about the seventh round. He's another of the long list of fantasy QBs who will be around during that stage of your draft if you're set on waiting on the position.
Posted by Brandon Niles
Friday, July 17, 2015 - 1:50pm
Greg Olsen was second last year among tight ends with 1,008 yards, tied for the most on the team. He remains a primary option in the Carolina passing game and has developed nicely as a security valve for quarterback Cam Newton. The Panthers have been prioritizing size in their receiving core to go with their huge quarterback, and Olsen fits right in as an athletic player who can move.
Olsen has enough speed to stretch the seam and the ball skills needed to be a threat in the red zone even though he finished with only six touchdowns last year. Olsen puts up fairly consistent numbers at the tight end position and is coming off his best year as a pro, with career highs in both yards and receptions. With a healthy quarterback this year and another outside target in Devin Funchess to take the pressure off him, Olsen could be even better this season.
While Funchess may take defense away, he might also take some targets. Additionally, Olsen won’t be likely to improve much on his touchdowns because of the way the Panthers operate in the red zone. Cam Newton tends to steal some scores in that area, and last year’s rookie receiver Kelvin Benjamin has already established himself as a touchdown monster.
Olsen is a step below the Rob Gronkowski’s of the world, but he’s about as consistent as it gets year-to-year and can usually be had for a much better value pick than the elite players at the position. Other owners are getting wise to Olsen as a nice starter, so his ADP is inching up, but if you decide to wait on tight end and Olsen is sitting there in the sixth round, he’s excellent value as an every-week fantasy starter.
2015 Strength of Schedule - CAR
Schedule difficulty based on schedule-adjusted, positional defensive ranking. Top DEF = 1, bottom DEF = 32.
2014 Game Stats