CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- There is a great deal of interest from potential bidders wanting to buy the Carolina Panthers. A number of international groups have made inquiries in the sale of the team, an NFL source told NBC Charlotte Wednesday.

Last week, NBC Charlotte learned South Carolina businessman Ben Navarro and Pittsburgh Steelers minority owner David Tepper are two of the big names in the mix to buy the team from Jerry Richardson. On Wednesday, a source from the NFL said there have been a number of inquiries from non-U.S. parties regarding the Panthers' sale.

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While it is a new development, it is not a shocking. The NFL has been working to expand its audiences outside the United States.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said in 2016 that international expansion was a realistic possibility.

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Since the 2007 season, the league has hosted games outside the country every year and the next season. The league has expanded the overseas games even more, with three games being played in London and one game in Mexico City.

Carolina is one of two teams that haven't or aren't included in the 2018 NFL schedule to play a game outside of the United States.

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