Arrington, Peterson among returning stars

Several teams are counting on the recoveries of injured players to turn their fortunes around in '05.

Updated: May 6, 2005, 3:53 PM ET
By Len Pasquarelli | ESPN.com

There's one big difference between the Carolina Panthers team that advanced to Super Bowl XXXVIII following the 2003 season and failed to qualify for the playoffs last season: In '03, Carolina was 8-4 in games decided by seven points or less and 6-1 in contests in which the margin was three points or fewer. Last year, the Panthers were 1-5 in seven-point outcomes and 0-4 in three-point games.

As in most of life's endeavors, close only counts when you're the one ahead by a nose at the finish ...

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