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Important Offseason Dates for the Carolina Panthers

The 2015 season has come to a close for the Carolina Panthers and the focus now is on the offseason. These are some of the important dates fans need to know about over the next few months, leading up to next season.

First day clubs to designate Franchise or Transition Players (2/16/2016)

This is important to the Carolina Panthers because this is something the team may use to keep cornerback Josh Norman. The starting cornerback became a free agent at the end of the season and if they are not able to reach a long-term deal, the franchise tag would be something to keep Norman in Carolina.

Related Article: Dave Gettleman Would Consider Using Franchise Tag for Josh Norman

NFL Scouting Combine (2/23/2016 to 2/29/2016)

This is the first chance NFL teams will have a chance to get an up-close look at some of the players that will be apart of the 2016 NFL Draft class.

Deadline for clubs to designate Franchise or Transition Players (3/1/2016)

NFL teams will have until 4:00 PM EST to decide if they want to use either the franchise or transition tags on one of their free agents.

Teams Permitted to Contact Unrestricted Free Agents (3/7/2016)

This marks the beginning of free agency as teams are able to contact unrestricted free agents. While teams are able to talk to free agents and agree to contracts in priniciple, they are not able to officially sign any players until 4:00 PM EST on March 9th.

All NFL teams must be under the 2016 salary cap (3/9/2016)

4:00 PM EST on March 9th is an important time because not only does it mark the start of free agency but all NFL teams must be under the salary cap before 4:00 PM EST.

Clubs with returning head coaches may begin offseason workout programs (4/18/2016)

This will be the first date that the Panthers are able to begin their offseason workout programs. However, Ron Rivera said this week that they won't be looking to rush back out on the practice field.

Related Article: Carolina Panthers' Expected to Change Offseason Work Due to Playoff Run

2016 NFL Draft (4/28/2016 to 4/30/2016)

The Panthers first pick in the 2016 NFL Draft will be the 30th pick in the first round.

Rookie Minicamp (5/6/2016 to 5/9/2016) OR (5/13/2016 to 5/16/2016)

Each NFL team can hold a three day rookie minicamp either the first or second weekend after the NFL Draft.

Deadline to Sign Franchise Tag Players to Multi-year Deal (7/15/2016)

If the Panthers do decide to use the franchise tag on Josh Norman they will have until July 15th to agree to a multi-year deal with the cornerback. If the two sides are not able to come to an agreement, the player may only sign a one-year contract for the 2016 season.

Twitter @BrandonCroce.

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