It's 4:05 p.m. in the Georgia Dome. That's usually when Panthers game end, except when they are on the West Coast.
Not this time. Because the Panthers-Falcons game was moved to TV to draw a wider audience, we're 10 minutes from kickoff. The Dome is loud, there are fireworks going off, there's a 40-yard-long Atlanta Falcons flag fluttering on the field -- it feels like a pretty big game.
I like the Georgia Dome as a venue. Always have. It's underrated as to how loud it can get, too -- Jake Delhomme will have some trouble getting the signals out on third downs here. That always happens.
I remember seeing the Panthers' first-ever real game here in 1995, when they lost to Atlanta in OT (Frank Reich was the QB). And the Olympics. And the Super Bowl. And the Final Four. And the ACC tournament. This place has hosted one huge event after another.
Hopefully today will be another good one. Keep checking back -- I'll be updating the "Scott Says" blog throughout the game. As my fine colleagues have already noted on their "Inside the Panthers" blog, the Falcons will wear all-black today, the Panthers all white and Dwayne Jarrett is active (while D.J. Hackett, who's been quite disappointing is not).