Offensive Player of the Year: Cam Newton
- Position: Quarterback
- Passing Yards: 3,837
- Completion Percentage: 59.8% (296/495)
- Touchdowns: 35
- Interceptions: 10
- Passer Rating: 99.4
- Rushing Attempts: 132
- Rushing Yards: 636
- Rushing Average: 4.8 yards/attempt
- Rushing Touchdowns: 10
“Considering he was presented with the actual award back in February, we won’t have to dig too deep for this one. Cam Newton, of course, was Carolina’s most valuable offensive player for the 2015 campaign.
Of his 45 total touchdowns, the most by any player this past season, 35 found the end zone through air with the other ten coming on the ground. Had Newton notched up one more passing and one more rushing score, he would have been the only player in NFL history to finish atop the league in both categories.
In addition to heading the highest scoring offense in football, Newton was also the first quarterback in nearly two decades to win MVP honors without a Pro Bowl wide receiver at his disposal. The last to do it before Cam? Soon-to-be Hall of Famer Brett Favre back in 1997.”
--- Anthony Rizzuti (@Anthony_Rizzuti)
Defensive Player of the Year: Josh Norman
- Position: Cornerback
- Solo Tackles: 48
- Assisted Tackles: 8
- Forced Fumbles: 3
- Fumbles Recovered: 2
- Interceptions: 4
- Passes Defended: 18
- Touchdowns: 2
“If he didn’t miss three and a half games early on in the season, linebacker Luke Kuechly would likely be the honoree here. But with the leader of the defense watching from the sidelines in Weeks 1 through 4 and the Panthers looking for a spark to kick off the first quarter of the season, another man stepped up. And that man was Josh Norman.
Norman consistently applied the clamps to some of the world’s top receivers throughout the year, holding down the likes of Julio Jones, DeAndre Hopkins, Odell Beckham Jr., Dez Bryant and T.Y. Hilton. According to Pro Football Focus, opposing quarterbacks managed a lowly 54.0 passer rating when challenging Norman—the lowest mark at the hands any cornerback in 2015.
His breakout certainly didn’t go unnoticed in the national eye, as the fourth-year cover man was named a First-team All-Pro and the Pro Football Writers Association’s Most Improved Co-Player of the Year.”
---Anthony Rizzuti (@Anthony_Rizzuti)
The Carolina Panthers finished the regular season with a 14-2 record and will have the 30th pick in the 2016 NFL Draft.
Brendan Walker is an NFL Analyst for Pro Football Spot. You can follow Brendan on Twitter @b_dog_walker