Tonight marked the official release of the 2012 National Football League schedule, and the Carolina Panthers will open up the 2012 campaign on September 9th against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium, and then on the following week, the Sean Payton-less New Orleans Saints will come to Charlotte on September 16th for Carolina’s home opener at Bank of America Stadium.
The Panthers will have four of their first 6 games of the season at home, which includes visits by the defending Super Bowl Champion New York Giants on September 20th, which will be the first of 2 national television appearances that the Panthers will make this season, and Pete Carroll will lead the Seattle Seahawks to town on October 7th. After the bye week, Carolina will wrap up the stretch with a visit from the Dallas Cowboys on October 21st. Panthers head coach Ron Rivera will return to his old stomping grounds on October 28th, when the Panthers take on the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field.
Former Panthers head coach John Fox will make his much-anticipated return to Charlotte on November 11th, when he and Peyton Manning lead the Denver Broncos to town and Carolina will make another National TV appearance on November 26th, when they travel to Philadelphia to face the Eagles on ESPN’s “Monday Night Football.
Coach Rivera, like many of us, is excited about the schedule being released as Cam Newton and company hope to bounce back after a tough season. “We had a strong finish last year and hope to maintain that momentum for the 2012 season.” Rivera said, while general manager Marty Hurney offered his thoughts on this year’s schedule. “We’ve known who we’re going to play since the end of the season, and I think that’s why Jerry Richardson brought the organization to the Carolinas.” said Hurney, “He wanted to generate the excitement that those games generate.”
The complete schedule is as follows:
CAROLINA PANTHERS 2012 REGULAR SEASON SCHEDULE(Home games in BOLD)
September 9th: @ Tampa Bay
September 16th: vs. New Orleans
September 20th: vs. New York Giants(NFL Network)
September 30th: @ Atlanta
October 7th: vs. Seattle
October 14th: Bye week
October 21st: vs. Dallas
October 28th: @ Chicago
November 4th @ Washington
November 11th: vs. Denver
November 18th: vs. Tampa Bay
November 26th: @ Philadelphia(ESPN’s “Monday Night Football”)
December 2nd: @ Kansas City
December 9th: vs. Atlanta
December 16th: @ San Diego
December 23rd. vs. Oakland
December 30th: @ New Orleans
Now that the schedule has been released, what games are you most looking forward to this season?