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The Carolina Panthers are the latest in a long-line of historically productive offenses that came up lame in the biggest game of the year, after an inept performance in a 24-10 loss to the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl 50.

It's a long and curious trend that reappeared time and again through the eras. The NFL, after all, is a very simple sport.

Score more points. Win the game.

It would make sense, then, that the highest-scoring teams in NFL history would consistetly win championships.

But they don't. Far more often, the most explosive offenses in history prove a dud in the biggest game of the year.

The 2015 Panthers, who went 15-1, were the 18th team in NFL history to score 500+ points in a season (19th if we include the old AFL).

Fourteen of those 19 members of the 500 Club – including the last seven straight – failed in the end because, in almost every case, those high-powered offenses disappeared when it mattered most. 

Carolina is the latest and a long and ugly line of colossal failures.

NFL Most Valuable Player Cam Newton and the Panthers averaged a league-best 31.3 PPG this year, and had just annihilated two high-quality playoff opponents by a combined score of 80-39.

But Sunday in Super Bowl 50, Newton was awful, with this worst passing performance of the year: 18 of 41, 265 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT. He ran the ball 6 times for 45 yards, but was sacked 6 times for a loss of 64 yards by the relentless Denver defense.

At the end of the day, the league's best offense produced just 10 points and lost by two touchdowns on a day when the Carolina defense held the Broncos to just 104 net passing yards and 194 total yards – the fewest by any Super Bowl champ.

Denver is just the eighth team in Super Bowl history to produce fewer than 200 yards of offense.

The previous seven teams all lost (1971 Dolphins, 1974 Vikings, 1977 Broncos, 1982 Dolphins, 1985 Patriots, 1989 Broncos, 2000 Giants).

A BUNCH OF LOSERS: THE 500-POINT CLUB

Team Record Points Result Points scored final game
2015 Panthers 15-1 500 Lost Super Bowl 10
2013 Broncos 13-3 606 Lost Super Bowl 8
2012 Patriots 12-4 557 Lost AFC title 13
2011 Packers 15-1 560 Lost div. playoff 20
2011 Saints 13-3 547 Lost div. playoff 32
2011 Patriots 13-3 513 Lost Super Bowl 17
2010 Patriots 14-2 518 Lost div. playoff 21
2009 Saints 13-3 510 Won Super Bowl 31
2007 Patriots 16-0 589 Lost Super Bowl 14
2004 Colts 12-4 522 Lost div. playoff 3
2001 Rams 14-2 503 Lost Super Bowl 17
2000 Rams 10-6 540 Lost wildcard 28
1999 Rams 13-3 526 Won Super Bowl 23
1998 Vikings 15-1 556 Lost NFC title 27
1998 Broncos 14-2 501 Won Super Bowl 34
1994 49ers 13-3 505 Won Super Bowl 49
1984 Dolphins 14-2 513 Lost Super Bowl 16
1983 Redskins 14-2 541 Lost Super Bowl 9
1961 Oilers 10-3-1 513 Won AFL title 10