During the period beginning at 12 noon, New York time, on March 7th and ending at 3:59:59 p.m., New York time, on March 9th, clubs are permitted to contact, and enter into contract negotiations with the certified agents of players who will become Unrestricted Free Agents upon the expiration of their 2016 player contracts at 4:00 p.m., New York time, on March 9. However, a contract cannot be executed with a new club until 4:00 p.m., New York time, on March 9.
During the above two-day negotiating period, no direct contact is permitted between a prospective unrestricted free agent and any employee or representative of a club, other than the player’s current club.
The 2017 League Year and Free Agency period begin at 4:00 p.m., New York time.
The first day of the 2017 League Year will end at 11:59:59 p.m., New York time, on March 9. Clubs will receive a personnel notice that will include all transactions submitted to the League office during the period between 4:00 p.m., New York time, and 11:59:59 p.m., New York time, on March 9.
Trading period for 2017 begins at 4:00 p.m., New York time, after expiration of all 2016 contracts.
The National Football League realigned its divisional and conference structure in 2002 with the introduction of the Houston Texans as an expansion franchise, and with that adopted a scheduling format that determines the majority of each team’s opponents.
The formula for each team's 16-game schedule includes: home and away games against its three division opponents (6 games), the four teams from another division within its conference on a rotating three-year cycle (4 games), the four teams from a division in the other conference on a rotating four-year cycle (4 games) and two games against conference opponents based on the prior year's standings (2 games).
The actual schedule should be released by the NFL in April.
*Team from that division that finishes in the same place in the 2014 standings as the Broncos.
Tentatively, for the 2016 season, the AFC West will match up against the AFC South (Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars and Tennessee Titans) and NFC South (Atlanta Falcons, Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints and Tampa Bay Buccaneers) as part of the NFL's scheduling rotation. Denver would also play the teams from the AFC East and North that finish in the same place as the Broncos in the 2015 standings.