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December 26, 2011

2012 schedule nearly set

After clinching third place in the NFC South by virtue of their 48-16 blowout of Tampa Bay, the Panthers' 2012 schedule is pretty well set.

Besides divisional games, the NFC South will be paired with the NFC East and AFC West next season. The Panthers also will face the third-place teams from the NFC North (Chicago) and NFC West (the loser of Sunday's Arizona-Seattle game).

Here's how it breaks down:

Home games: Atlanta, New Orleans, Tampa Bay, Dallas, New York Giants, Arizona/Seattle loser, San Diego, Kansas City.

Away games: Atlanta, New Orleans, Tampa Bay, Philadelphia, Washington, Chicago, Oakland, Denver.

(The NFL modified its formula for West Coast travel, beginning with the 2010 season, so teams wouldn't have to make two trips to the West Coast. The league paired Oakland with Denver, and San Diego with Kansas City, for teams facing the AFC West. The Panthers' AFC West destinations for next season were based on this year's schedule for NFC North teams, which played the AFC West.)

A couple of observations:

The Chicago trip will mark the third time the Panthers have faced DE Julius Peppers since Peppers left Carolina as a free agent. Panthers defensive coordinator Sean McDermott will get a chance to play his hometown Philadelphia Eagles and exact a little revenge on Andy Reid, who fired McDermott last offseason.

Cam Newton will go head-to-head with Tim Tebow, his former teammate at Florida, and the Eagles' Michael Vick, whom Newton admired growing up in Atlanta when Vick played for the Falcons.

And of course, the Panthers will match up against former coach John Fox for the first time.

The full schedule will be released later. Given Newton's success and popularity – and the innovative nature of the Panthers' offense – expect to see a couple of prime-time, Sunday and Monday night games.

--Joseph Person


Posted by Observer Sports on December 26, 2011 at 04:29 PM | Permalink


Wouldn't the winner of the Arizona/Seattle game take second place in that division? Meaning we would play the loser...?

I fully expect the game against Dallas or NYG to be a primetime game. We could potentially get a Monday nighter against ATL or NO (especially if NO wins the Super Bowl).

Posted by: BB | Dec 26, 2011 4:49:52 PM

THE NFL ANNOUNCED that in future years, teams will travel to either Kansas City and San Diego OR to Oakland and Denver when playing the entire AFC West

Posted by: DJ | Dec 26, 2011 5:01:03 PM

We don't know which moves will teams make in Free agency But looking at this schedule to me it seem like it a easier schedule then this year was

Posted by: john | Dec 26, 2011 5:50:58 PM

Why do the Panthers have to travel to CHI again? The Denver game should be huge if Tebow continues to play well.

Posted by: CEREBRUM | Dec 26, 2011 8:10:10 PM

The Panthers didn't travel to Chicago in 2011. Carolina finished the year in Third Place, and so did the lowly Baby Bears.
The NFL has a formula, or structure for how the games are set up. It has always been that way. If the Panthers had finished in Last Place, Carolina would be traveling to Minnesota in 2012.
Hopefully, that helps.

Posted by: Ndamukong Suh | Dec 26, 2011 8:46:40 PM

yes we did go to Chicago this year...looking forward to playing them again, would love another crack at the Cards next year too....those were two games we should have won

Posted by: bull123 | Dec 26, 2011 9:41:40 PM

We get the Arizona/Seattle loser, and third place NFCW team, here next year.

If Denver can get to the playoffs, that game in Denver will likely be early in the season on Sunday night. Cam vs. Tebow will get big ratings.

Posted by: Phil | Dec 26, 2011 9:42:40 PM

Vick vs. Newton will be big ratings!

Posted by: joe cool | Dec 26, 2011 10:52:40 PM

Ready to buy my playoff tickets!!!

Posted by: DL | Dec 27, 2011 7:50:55 AM

Maybe the Panthers will get some respect and love from the TV guys.

Posted by: Nosebleed Fan | Dec 27, 2011 10:21:30 AM

I'll be glad to see Panthers games on prime time, especially on a Sunday night, since I don't have cable anymore.

Posted by: jbr549 | Dec 27, 2011 12:43:01 PM

Oh cool!! The Black Cats play ALL* the teams that count!!
*Denver, because Fox took a huge wiz on the Panthers’ 2010 season, (and of course Teabiscuit; Da Bears, featuring “I’ll play when I’m in the mood” Peppers; The Bolts (El Ron’s previous employer); “The Boyz” featuring Choke-OH-ROMO; and the Raiders. I actually like the Raiders, but they made me laugh when they tried to sue the Panthers in California Supreme Court for copying their uniforms. LOL That is so cute. And so Lame.

Posted by: WeezerZee | Dec 27, 2011 7:31:12 PM

I see a bunch of possible prime-time match-ups!

I believe we'll have at least two and as many as four!

@ Dal, VS Phila, and VS Den should be on Sunday or Monday night. Throw in one of the division match ups against Saints and that's a slew of great prime time games!

Posted by: T-Mac | Dec 27, 2011 7:42:54 PM

tebow haters and pedophiles are all farted from their mommys butthole at birth


Posted by: pedophile killa | Dec 28, 2011 8:31:34 AM

Looks to me like 16 winnable games next season...Well, I'll give New Orleans their home game, so let's call it 15-1...

Posted by: stonecoldplaya | Dec 28, 2011 9:38:28 AM

For once I hope you are right on that 15-1 lol

Posted by: Letha | Dec 30, 2011 1:13:23 PM

For once I hope you are right on that 15-1 lol

Posted by: Letha | Dec 30, 2011 1:13:23 PM

I think 11-5, and we could go undefeated at home! Also I bet NY game will be the Sunday night(larges TV market)

Posted by: lee | Jan 2, 2012 3:25:09 PM

I see a minimum of two prime time games this season.

Posted by: nasty704 | Mar 26, 2012 1:19:41 PM

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