This means Patriots fans can expect a visit from Manning in 2012, as the Broncos are one of the teams coming to Gillette Stadium.
A matchup between Manning and Tom Brady would be a dramatic way for the NFL to throw a firecracker into its kickoff weekend. That will be something to watch for when the schedule is announced next month.
In a recent tradition, the NFL has the Super Bowl champion open the season on a Thursday night (this year's game will be on a Wednesday).
The Super Bowl loser hasn't been locked into a prime-time game, as evidenced by the Steelers playing in a 1 p.m. ET game to open the 2011 season (against the Ravens).