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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The NFL has switched the Carolina Panthers' game at New Orleans against the Saints on Dec. 8 from early afternoon to an 8:30 p.m. kickoff on NBC Charlotte.

The Atlanta Falcons-Green Bay Packers game originally scheduled to be played that night was moved to 1 p.m. ET on FOX as part of NBC's flexible scheduling policy.

The NFL announced the schedule switch on Sunday night.

The game is an NFC South showdown between Drew Brees and the division-leading Saints (9-2) and Cam Newton and the surging Panthers (8-3), who have won seven in a row.

It's the first of two games in three weeks between the rivals. New Orleans plays at Carolina on Dec. 22.

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