The Carolina Panthers are a professional American football team based in Charlotte, North Carolina. The Panthers play in the National Football League (NFL), as a member team of the National Football Conference (NFC) South division. The club is worth approximately USD $1.56 billion, according to Forbes, and is controlled by founder Jerry Richardson and his family, who have a 48 percent stake; the remainder of the team is held by a group of 14 limited partners. The head coach is Ron Rivera. The team president is Danny Morrison.
The Panthers were announced as the league's 29th franchise in 1993, and began play in 1995. The Panthers played well in their first two years, finishing 7–9 in 1995 (an all-time best for an NFL expansion team's first season). In their second year of play, the Panthers finished with a record of 12-4, winning the NFC West before ultimately losing to the eventual Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship game. However, they did not have another winning season until 2003, when the team won the NFC Championship Game and reached Super Bowl XXXVIII, losing 32–29 to the New England Patriots. After recording playoff appearances in 2005 and 2008, the team failed to record another playoff appearance until 2013, when they finished with a 12–4 record and won the NFC South. The Panthers have made the playoffs seven times, reaching the NFC Championship Game in four of them. They have won six division titles, one in the NFC West and five in the NFC South.
The Carolina Panthers are legally registered as Panther Football, LLC. The team is headquartered in Bank of America Stadium, located in uptown Charlotte; the stadium also serves as the team's home field. The Panthers are one of the few teams in the NFL to own the stadium they play in, which is legally registered as Panthers Stadium, LLC. The Panthers are supported throughout the Carolinas; although the team has played their home games in Charlotte since the completion of their stadium in 1996, they played home games at Memorial Stadium in Clemson, South Carolina, during their first season, and they host their annual training camp at Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina. At home games, the atmosphere has been described as comparable to that of other NFL teams, with some games playing host to a large number of fans of the opposing team; this has been attributed to several factors, such as the city's relatively recent entry into the NFL, the popularity of basketball in the Charlotte region, and the large number of Charlotte residents who are originally from other cities with NFL teams. The Panthers' uniforms consist of black, white, and blue jerseys paired with white and silver pants, a pattern which has only seen minor alterations since the team's inception.