The X-factor for Carolina Panthers vs Seattle Seahawks

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The Carolina Panthers stand upon the precipice of historical greatness as they embark upon this journey called the “NFL playoffs.” After a 15-1 season, they find themselves only two victories away from the Super Bowl. The pathway to historical immortality is not unblocked. The first hurdle through which the Panthers must go is the impressive Seattle Seahawks.

These Seahawks are on a sweltering streak of play in their own right as of late. After a horrendous 2-4 start to their season, following an emotional Super Bowl loss and a controversial off-season, the Seahawks hit their stride at a torrid pace. This winning not only placed them in the playoffs, it made them a popular dark-horse favorite to win the championship.

Jan 10, 2016; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Seattle Seahawks players including Kam Chancellor (31) , DeShawn Shead (35) , Richard Sherman (25) and Brandon Mebane (92) celebrate after Minnesota Vikings kicker Blair Walsh (not pictured) missed a field goal in the fourth quarter in a NFC Wild Card playoff football game at TCF Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

So as these two red-hot teams face each other for the second time this season, what (or rather who) will be the defining element that seals or destroys the chance of a win on Sunday?

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