At 7:30 p.m. ET on Thursday, the NFL allowed its clubs to release tentative schedules for the 2020 season that seems guaranteed to be affected by the coronavirus pandemic. For now, however, the 17-week campaign remains scheduled to begin on Thursday, September 10, with the Super Bowl champions raising a banner.
Week 1: Houston Texans at Kansas City Chiefs
A tradition continues, as Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs, winners of Super Bowl LIV, will face Deshaun Watson and the Houston Texans on September 10; that is, assuming Houston head coach Bill O'Brien hasn't shipped Watson out of town by then.
Week 1: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New Orleans Saints
Perhaps you've heard or read that Brady is no longer with Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots. Recently, former college head coach Urban Meyer praised QB Jarrett Stidham. Will he be atop New England's depth chart for his team's opening game in September
Week 2: New Orleans Saints at Las Vegas Raiders
What's an additional week to wait for a special home debut, Las Vegas fans? The plus is you get prime time and "Monday Night Football" for the game. The minus is you'll be seeing Drew Brees and the Saints.
Week 3: Kansas City Chiefs at Baltimore Ravens
In a matchup of young guard versus younger guard, 2018 NFL Most Valuable Player Patrick Mahomes will take on 2019 MVP Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens on the road. The sports gods gave us this gift on Monday Night Football, so there's no excuse to miss this one.
Week 12: Kansas City Chiefs at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
While we don't personally know Brady, we suspect he's not keen on passing-of-the-torch moments. Maybe Mahomes could convince him such milestones have their merit in late November.
Week 13: Cincinnati Bengals at Miami Dolphins
Two big questions hover over this late-season game. Will Cincinnati QB Joe Burrow be a Rookie of the Year favorite by this time of the year? Will Tua Tagovailoa be under center for the Dolphins?
Week 15: Cleveland Browns at New York Giants
An old saying teaches that you can't go home again. Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. will test that theory when he faces his former employer at MetLife Stadium on December 20. That postgame encounter between quarterbacks Baker Mayfield and Daniel Jones could be interesting.
Week 16: Minnesota Viking at New Orleans Saints
A lot can and will happen before Week 17, but this is an early favorite to be flexed to the final "Sunday Night Football" game of the season. Give us Russell Wilson versus Jimmy Garoppolo under the bright lights to get us to the playoffs.