Panthers in the power rankings: Week 1

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Here's where the Panthers stand in various power rankings entering their Week 1 matchup with the San Francisco 49ers on the road. 

NFL.com

Panthers rank: 23rd (13th in NFC)
Previous rank: N/A

NFC South: Falcons 3rd, Buccaneers 13th, Saints 18th, Panthers 23rd
This week's opponent: 49ers 28th

Beyond the numbers: Elliot Harrison still believes there's a lot of questions surrounding the Panthers heading into Week 1. Is Cam Newton ready? How long can Greg Olsen stay the top target? Who is the vertical threat on offense? Until Carolina can answer these questions, they'll remain towards the bottom of the power rankings.


ESPN.com

Panthers rank: 10th (6th in NFC)
Previous rank: N/A

NFC South: Falcons 5th, Panthers 10th, Buccaneers 13th, Saints 19th
This week's opponent: 49ers 31st

Beyond the numbers: David Newton predicts the Panthers' defense returns to top-10 form in 2017. If Cam Newton can rebound from a disappointing 2016 season, with the help of Christian McCaffrey, don't be surpirsed if the Panthers make the playoffs for the fourth time in five years.


CBSSports.com

Panthers rank: 19th (9th in NFC)
Previous rank: N/A

NFC South: Falcons 3rd, Buccaneers 8th, Panthers 19th, Saints 22nd
This week's opponent: 49ers 31st

Beyond the numbers: Pete Prisco says Carolina appears to be past the Super Bowl hangover they endured last season. The offense will take the field with more weapons for Newton to work with.


Yahoo Sports

Panthers rank: 13th (7th in NFC)
Previous rank: N/A

NFC South: Falcons 3rd, Panthers 13th, Buccaneers 14th, Saints 20th
This week's opponent: 49ers 30th

Beyond the numbers: Frank Schwab points out that the only worry surrounding the Panthers is Newton's lack of snaps this preseason. Carolina goes as Newton goes.


Bleacher Report

Panthers rank: 24th (13th in NFC)
Previous rank: N/A

NFC South: Falcons 8th, Saints 15th, Buccaneers 20th, Panthers 24th
This week's opponent: 49ers 26th

Beyond the numbers: Chris Simms is skeptical of Carolina's offense. While Kelvin Benjamin has looked the best he's looked in his career this preseason, his quarterback only threw two passes. Also, Simms believes there are still concerns regarding the talent level on the Panthers' defense - specifically in the pass rush and secondary. 

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