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Carolina Panthers v Chicago Bears

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After an 1-8 start to the season, the Panthers are in unfamiliar territory, as they haven’t been this non-competitive since 2010, when they went 2-14, on their way to earning the #1 pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, where they would eventually draft Cam Newton. With 8 games left in the 2023-24 season, Carolina won’t be favored in any of their remaining games, meaning, in theory, 1-16 is on the table.

The Panthers may have never put together back to back winning seasons, but to be a relative young franchise, Carolina hasn’t endured many dreadful seasons. In 2001, the Panthers went 1-15, losing 15 straight games, after a season opening win over the Vikings. In 2010, they started 1-5, on their way to that 2-14 season. Since then, the fewest amount of wins in a season has been 5, which happened in the first season under Matt Rhule.

After an off-season filled with big moves, the Panthers looked poised to return to the competitive team, we’ve seen at different times uring their time in the NFL. Instead, the dysfunction that has existed since David Tepper, has once again struck, and is as a big a reason that the team finds itself 1-8.

This team has more talent than the 2010 team had, but it doesn’t have the same cornerstone players that would eventually take Carolina to the Super Bowl, like the 2001 team had. Which means it’s fair to ask, if this is the worst team in Panthers history, given the talent that does exist on both sides of the football, and the starpower on the coaching staff. That is the exact conversation that the Wes & Walker Show had earlier today on WFNZ. Carolina’s offense has been nothing short of anemic, scoring over 20 points just three times. The defense is the only reason they’ve remained competitive, but gave up over 40 points or more twice, on top of allowing 37 points at Seattle. All in all, this team has failed to deliver on the hope they instilled in the fan base over the off-season, and once again finds itself playing meaningless football as we near the Thanksgiving holiday.

Frank Reich continues to preach his message that they aren’t far away, and that they have the right people in the locker room to turn the season around. But that same message, and those same players have led to one of the most disappointing seasons in franchise history.

You can catch the Wes & Walker Show, every weekday from 12-3 PM, on Sports Radio 92.7 WFNZ, and the WFNZ app.