Nakamura: Panthers just need taste of playoffs

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SPARTANBURG, S.C. (AP) — Safety Haruki Nakamura says Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers have all of the ingredients to be a perennial playoff team — they just need a taste of it.

Nakamura, who joined the Panthers from the Baltimore Ravens this offseason as a free agent, says "once this team gets in there and Cam (Newton) gets a taste of being in the playoffs, he's going to be hooked."

Nakamura should know.

He helped the Ravens reach the AFC Championship game as a rookie in 2008. The Ravens have won a playoff game all three seasons since then with Nakamura serving as a special teams player and backup to future Hall of Famer Ed Reed.

Now he's eager to challenge for a starting role in Carolina and become a team leader.

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