New England Patriots

The NFL preseason may seem ages away, but in reality the Patriots and teams around the league will be opening training camp in about four months. On Tuesday, we learned what two steps of the Patriots’ preseason will be.

According to Joe Person, who covers the Carolina Panthers for the Athletic, the Patriots will be hosting the Panthers for a preseason game at Gillette Stadium this summer. That will be one of two preseason home games for the Patriots, as a part of the new alternating three-game preseason format. He didn’t add which week of the preseason the game will take place.

Person added the Patriots and Panthers will also hold joint practices leading up to the game. This will be the first time the teams hold joint practices together.

There’s currently no roster overlap between the Patriots and Panthers – with no players on either side who have played for both teams. That could change though based on the decision of two of Carolina’s pending free agents. Cornerback Stephon Gilmore spent four seasons with the Patriots from 2017-2020, winning a Super Bowl with the team and being named NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2019.

There’s also quarterback Cam Newton, who was a first overall pick by the Panthers in 2011. Newton played nine years with the franchise including an MVP season in 2015. He then signed with the Patriots in 2020 and played one season as the starting quarterback in New England, before returning to Carolina in 2021. His contract expired at the end of the year, making Sam Darnold and P.J. Walker the team’s lone quarterbacks.

The NFL is expected to release the full preseason matchups in coming weeks. In addition to the Panthers, the Patriots will likely face the Giants – as they have for the majority of the Bill Belichick era to close out the preseason. Meanwhile, the Patriots’ regular season opponents are already known, here’s a full look at who will be on their schedule in 2022 (the league will release the order in the coming weeks)…

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Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at abarth@985TheSportsHub.com.