LaFell really likes Carolina's wideouts. (Getty Images)

The Panthers are going to be explosive on offense in 2012. That's just what happens when you take a top-five unit, give them the progression of a talented rookie quarterback and a full offseason of work.

But there are question marks. For instance, the wide receiver group. Which, according to Brandon LaFell, is ... as good as any group in the NFL ...?

"We’ve got guys that can compete with anybody," LaFell told Joseph Person of the Charlotte Observer on Wednesday. "I don’t feel like there’s a secondary that really can stop us because we’ve got as many guys as anyone else has that can get open and make plays."

This is simply not accurate. No offense to LaFell, who I like a lot, but it's just not. In fact, the Panthers are probably the third-best group of wideouts in their division, behind the Falcons and the Saints.

Steve Smith is a stud, LaFell is a talented/physical receiver who needs to produce, and David Gettis/Louis Murphy have upside as deep threats. But there's not much proven with this group; the real skill-position talent lies at tight end (Greg Olsen's immensely underrated) and running back (the trio of DeAngelo Williams, Jonathan Stewart and Mike Tolbert might be the best overall group in the NFL).

Certainly the Panthers are counting on one of LaFell, Gettis and Murphy to break out this season. That would go a long way towards helping Carolina retain its status as an elite offense, and would further Cam's development as a passing quarterback.

But until one of them does breakout, it's pretty difficult to justify saying that the Panthers have a group of wideouts that can hang with anyone else in the NFL, when there are plenty of teams out there with several elite wide receivers to the Panthers one.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, subscribe to our RSS Feed and subscribe to our Pick-6 Podcast and NFL newsletter. You can follow Will Brinson on Twitter here: @willbrinson.