Cam Newton (QB-Car) was the 2015 fantasy football MVP and will have another sensational season in 2016.

The Panthers went on an incredible run in 2015. They had a fantastic regular season, capped off with a trip to the Super Bowl. Fantasy-wise, they were a three-man operation with the occasional Teddy Ginn touchdown thrown in. I expect this offense to be much better in the passing game with Kelvin Benjamin coming back from knee surgery. You should still expect Cam to run wild, especially near the end zone.

This backfield is somewhat of an anomaly. The big back doesn't score all the TDs, there is no conventional handcuff, even though there is an injury prone RB. A weapon like Cam Newton can do that to a backfield, though. He takes convention and throws it directly into the trash. There was also a back that had double digit TDs on the ground. Yes, that was also Cam. Jonathan Stewart, through all of the fluff, is still a good fantasy back.

The Core

Cam Newton (QB) - 3800 yards, 30 TDs, 12 INTs, 600 yards, 7 TDs.

Cam Newton was unquestionably the MVP of last season. He was probably also the fantasy MVP (you could argue Devonta Freeman). Newton is in line for another great season. He gets Benjamin back, along with newfound deep threat, Ted Ginn. The receiving core is strong with those two and Greg Olsen at tight end. With Newton's rushing, he should be off the board quickly.

Jonathan Stewart (RB-Car) was healthy for most of 2015 and is a solid RB2 for the 2016 fantasy football season.

Jonathan Stewart (RB) - 900 yards, 5 TDs, 20 catches, 125 yards, 1 TD.

J-Stew has had a weird career. He was drafted by Carolina in the first round when they had DeAngelo Williams. He shared a lot of his career with Williams until last season. Now he is having to share time with, not another running back, but Cam Newton. Stewart is ultra talented and would have much better numbers if he hadn't played second fiddle for so many years. The upside is that, now that he's getting on up in years, he still doesn't have much tread on the tires. Expect J-Stew to be good again this season. He is the 17th RB off the board and should slot nicely into your RB2 spot. If he was the lead back in red-zone, he would be a surefire RB1.

Kelvin Benjamin (WR) - 75 catches, 1000 yards, 10 TDs.

It's hard to imagine what this offense could have been if Benjamin had stayed healthy last season. As it is, Carolina had a 1000 yard receiver in Olsen and a double-digit touchdown receiver in Ginn. This season, Benjamin should be in both of those categories. Benjamin is going as the 18th WR off the board in the 3rd round. If you want him, you have to take him close to there.

Greg Olsen (TE-Car) is a consistently productive fantasy football tight end and should be a safe draft pick again in 2016.

Greg Olsen (TE) - 80 catches, 1000 yards, 6 TDs.

The only season that Olsen and Benjamin played together, they had the exact same number of yards (1008). The likelihood of that happening again is probably small, but it would be fun if it did. Olsen is in the second tier of tight ends with Jordan Reed. And if you don't like Reed's injury history and prefer consistency, take Olsen. He is the type of TE that always gives you something, and that's great for this position.


Ted Ginn (WR)

Even with a 10-TD season, Ginn is being drafted late. Ginn was the Panthers' No. 1 receiver last year, but this year should be their third option. It's still safe to expect a few boom games for Ginn, but not as many as last year.


Everyone else in this offense

No one else has any fantasy relevance in this offense whatsoever. Yes, that goes for Mike Tolbert, too. Even when J-Stew was hurt, no one player benefited enough to become relevant.

You always have to worry about the Super Bowl hangover, but I believe this offense will be a better fantasy source than it was last season.


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