4 reasons why the Panthers could secure unlikely playoff spot in 2022

(Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports) Christian McCaffrey
(Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports) Christian McCaffrey /
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Although it appears unlikely, some scenarios could emerge where the Carolina Panthers make a surprising push for playoff football in 2022.

Things are looking fairly encouraging for the Carolina Panthers after another eventful offseason for the franchise. However, there are still big questions about how this roster and coaching staff can mesh when it comes to the crunch during the regular season.

Matt Rhule heads into the campaign seemingly on the hot seat. The Panthers have enough talent across the board to make strides, but the former Baylor man must prove beyond all doubt he can successfully lead a group of grown men rather than college prospects.

If he can accomplish this and established figures meet expectations, then Carolina could surprise a few despite a tough-looking schedule. It won’t be easy by any stretch, but the Panthers might be able to prove some doubters who’ve already written them off wrong if everything clicks into place right away.

With this in mind, here are some reasons why the Panthers could secure an unlikely playoff spot in 2022.

Reason No. 1

Carolina Panthers
(Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports) Christian McCaffrey /

Carolina Panthers have Christian McCaffrey

Although there are concerns about his ability to stay healthy, one thing that cannot be disputed is how much of a game-changer Christian McCaffrey can be when healthy. The Carolina Panthers will be relying on the All-Pro running back heavily once again in 2022, but there could be a different approach to preparations throughout the week and his workload between the white lines.

McCaffrey’s turned out 10 times in two seasons, so there is plenty riding on the campaign for the player personally and the Panthers overall. The former first-round pick looks healthy and razor sharp this offseason, but that will count for nothing if cannot put a solid run of games together.

If the Panthers can find a way of maximizing McCaffrey’s elite talents and keeping him relatively out of harm’s way, then they should be competitive at the very least.