Peyton Maining's Denver Broncos to open NFL season against Steelers
(Reuters) - Peyton Manning's first game as the Denver Broncos quarterback will be in primetime when they host the Pittsburgh Steelers on the opening Sunday of the 2012 National Football League (NFL) season in September.
The September 9 game, announced by the NFL on Tuesday along with the full 2012 schedule, will be the first in 20 months for the four-time Most Valuable Player, who was cut by the Indianapolis Colts in March after missing the 2011 campaign recovering from neck surgery.
"The opening game in Denver obviously will be an interesting way to start the season," Steelers' President Art Rooney said in a statement.
"There will be a lot of attention paid to Peyton Manning's first game with the Denver Broncos, so it'll be exciting to start out that way."
Plenty of attention on the first Sunday of the season will also be paid to the New Orleans Saints when the scandal-ravaged team hosts the Washington Redskins, who are expected to draft Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Robert Griffin III next week.
Saints coach Sean Payton is suspended the entire season for his part in a scheme that paid bonuses to players for knocking opponents out of games, several players could still be banned and quarterback Drew Brees is dealing with a contract dispute.
Tim Tebow, who was released by the Broncos to make way for Manning, could make his Big Apple debut when the New York Jets host the Buffalo Bills in Week One.
Opening week will also feature a Monday Night double-header with the Cincinnati Bengals visiting the Baltimore Ravens and the Oakland Raiders hosting the San Diego Chargers.