NFL Release Team Schedules: Panthers Woefully Thin on Chances to Show Off

A week 17 rematch is on the cards against the Saints. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)

Conventional wisdom thought that a team sporting the 2011 Rookie of the Year, and possible Madden cover athlete would be given ample opportunities by the NFL to show off. However, conventional wisdom can often be wrong. The Carolina Panthers will get to star in just two prime time games in 2012- hosting the New York Giants in week three on a Thursday night game on the NFL Network, then heading to Philadelphia for Monday Night Football on November 26th.

While it would be easy to get a chip on one's shoulder it seems the NFL went almost exclusively by team record in picking the schedule. Even organizations like Washington with huge fanbases and RGIII at QB were only given one night game. As usual the Dallas Cowboys got inundated- which is a regular staple no matter how mediocre the team is.

The whole schedule, and at least one pitfall after the jump.

REGULAR SEASON
DAY DATE OPPONENT LOCATION TIME NETWORK
Sun. Sept. 9 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Raymond James Stadium 4:15 p.m. FOX
Sun. Sept. 16 vs. New Orleans Saints Bank of America Stadium 1:00 p.m. FOX
Thu. Sept. 20 vs. New York Giants Bank of America Stadium 8:20 p.m. NFLN
Sun. Sept. 30 at Atlanta Falcons Georgia Dome 1:00 p.m. FOX
Sun. Oct. 7 vs. Seattle Seahawks Bank of America Stadium 4:05 p.m. FOX
Sun. Oct. 14 Bye
Sun. Oct. 21 vs. Dallas Cowboys Bank of America Stadium 1:00 p.m. FOX
Sun. Oct. 28 at Chicago Bears Soldier Field 1:00 p.m. FOX
Sun. Nov. 4 at Washington Redskins FedEx Field 1:00 p.m. FOX
Sun. Nov. 11 vs. Denver Broncos Bank of America Stadium 1:00 p.m. CBS
Sun. Nov. 18 vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Bank of America Stadium 1:00 p.m. * FOX
Mon. Nov. 26 at Philadelphia Eagles Lincoln Financial Field 8:30 p.m. ESPN
Sun. Dec. 2 at Kansas City Chiefs Arrowhead Stadium 1:00 p.m. * FOX
Sun. Dec. 9 vs. Atlanta Falcons Bank of America Stadium 1:00 p.m. * FOX
Sun. Dec. 16 at San Diego Chargers Qualcomm Stadium 4:05 p.m. * FOX
Sun. Dec. 23 vs. Oakland Raiders Bank of America Stadium 1:00 p.m. * CBS
Sun. Dec. 30 at New Orleans Saints Mercedes-Benz Superdome 1:00 p.m. * FOX
* - Subject to flexible scheduling.

Schedule courtesy of Panthers.com

I really hate the way the season begins. With three divisional opponents in four weeks it ensures the Panthers have no room for error in getting off to a fast start, and their divisional record could be decimated if they carry some minor- niggling injuries into the regular season. To most teams something like turf-toe is an annoyance, to Carolina is could derail the season. The bye is quite favorable, however, and five games in is a good rest point for the Panthers.

Despite the hardships, this is a pretty fun slate of games to enjoy. There are a lot of teams we haven't seen in a while, and with a lot of great out-of-division QBs to see like Peyton Manning, Philip Rivers, and Eli Manning it bodes to be a schedule rife with great offenses.

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