After both played at career-best levels, quarterbacks Cam Newton and Carson Palmer are primed to finish first and second in this season’s MVP voting. Leading their respective teams to a first-round bye this postseason, the two will now face off in the NFC Championship game.
Although these teams are extremely talented, their playoff experience (or lack thereof) cannot be ignored. Heading into this heavily anticipated matchup, the two franchise quarterbacks combine for a total of seven games of postseason experience.
This comes in stark contrast to the AFC’s Championship game, which will feature the common Tom Brady-Peyton Manning showdown. The two veterans have combined for a total of 55 postseason games, and will be the AFC’s starting quarterback in the Super Bowl for the 9th time in the last 13 years.
For the NFC, it’s guaranteed to be the first Super Bowl for Newton or Palmer. However, this parity is what keeps the NFL so intriguing. While Newton will be in the league for the foreseeable future, at 35 years old, Palmer might not have many more opportunities at a Lombardi Trophy.
Despite entering the playoffs as the Super Bowl favorite, history is not on Arizona’s side. The Panthers have won 12 consecutive games at Bank of America Stadium, and Cam has proven to be unstoppable in front of his home crowd.
Newton will once again show why he’s the worthy MVP and get his Panthers back to the Super Bowl for the first time since 2004.