CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Carolina Panthers coach Ron Rivera welcomes the idea of playing a game in Mexico City if the NFL expands its international series past the United Kingdom.
“It’s interesting, because of my heritage, both Mexican and Puerto Rican, being so close to Puerto Rico, my dad’s family really stays in touch,’’ Rivera said. “In fact, they listen to our broadcast in Spanish.
“They really get a kick out of it. It’s been neat to share that with my side of the family.’’
The league approved a resolution on Wednesday to extend the ability to play international regular-season games through 2025 and broaden the opportunities to countries outside the United Kingdom.
Mexico City is one of the options the league is looking at.
Since the league began playing these games in 2007, the Panthers have not participated. Rivera doesn’t know if the Permanent Seat Licenses (PSL) plan implemented in the mid-90s to privately fund the building of Bank of America Stadium impacts whether Carolina can give up a home game.
But he does like the idea of keeping the home field advantage he believes the Panthers have had the past couple of years. They are 11-5 at home, including 7-1 in 2013.
So even if the Panthers were to participate in the International Series, he would prefer to give up a road game.
“I like the idea of us having eight home games here,’’ Rivera said. “I’d hate to see us lose one, but if we had to go overseas and play, that would be a cool experience for us as a football team, for our players and the exposure of the league.’’