Carolina Panthers – 2017
2016 was a shocking year for the Panthers but they bounced back the following season and returned to the playoffs after missing out the previous year. Also, Cam Newton appeared to have returned to his integral best. They played the Saints in their first and only postseason game.
In the end, they became a one-and-done team after New Orleans snuck past them. The officials called Newton for a penalty late in the game. Then the Saints sacked the quarterback twice as they clung to victory. Many people thought the Panthers were dark horses to go all the way (via Sporting News).