Thursday, May 16th, 2024

105th NFL Season Schedule Revealed

Gridiron

105th NFL Season Schedule Revealed

Gridiron NFL

The NFL has announced the 18-week, 272-game regular season schedule for 2024, kicking off in Kansas City on Thursday, September 5th, and concluding with 16 division games in Week 18.

The NFL’s 105th season begins with the annual primetime kickoff game as the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs host the Baltimore Ravens at GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium in a rematch of last season’s AFC Championship Game.

The two most recent winners of the Most Valuable Player award — Baltimore’s Lamar Jackson (2023) and Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes (2022) — are thus scheduled to face off for the sixth time in their careers, including postseason games. Should both players start as expected, Jackson (two-time MVP) and Mahomes (two-time MVP) would become the seventh different pair of quarterbacks to meet in a regular-season game after both players had won multiple MVP awards.

The kickoff game — which has been an annual tradition since 2002 — will feature a rematch of one of the previous season’s conference championship games for only the third time — and the first since 2010, when New Orleans defeated Minnesota in a rematch of the NFC Championship. The other instance was 2004, when New England defeated Indianapolis in a rematch of the AFC Championship.

This year, there will be no three day gap between games one and two, as Friday, September 6th sees the Green Bay Packers meet the Philadelphia Eagles in Brazil. The first-ever regular season NFL game to be played in South America will also mark the first time the league has played a game on the Friday of their opening weekend in over 50 years, when the St. Louis Cardinals and Los Angeles Rams met on September 18th 1970. The clash at Corinthians Arena in Sao Paulo comes with the intriguing caveat that the stadium has a ban on teams playing in green, the primary colour of Corinthians’ biggest rival. Could we see Packers in white and Eagles in black to start their seasons?

Week 1 continues with two head coaches making their opening week debut with their club as Antonio Pierce and the Las Vegas Raiders visit Jim Harbaugh and the Los Angeles Chargers, while Super Bowl-winning head coach Sean Payton and the Denver Broncos travel to Seattle to face the Seahawks, where Mike Macdonald will make his NFL head coaching debut. Later that same day, Tom Brady will make his commentary booth debut as the Dallas Cowboys visit the Cleveland Browns in a matchup of two 2023 playoff teams, while the Washington Commanders, under new head coach Dan Quinn, travel to take on the reigning NFC South champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Sunday Night Football begins with Mathew Stafford and the Los Angeles Rams visiting Jared Goff and the Detroit Lions in a rematch of last season’s NFC Wild Card round, in which the Lions earned their first playoff victory since 1991. Of course, the fixture also features the two quarterbacks that swapped franchises ahead of the Rams’ latest Super Bowl victory. NBC will televise one game each Sunday night in Weeks 1-17, as well as Miami at Green Bay on Thanksgiving night and Houston at Kansas City on the Saturday of Week 16.

Kickoff Weekend concludes on Monday, September 9th, with Aaron Rodgers returning to the field for the first time since tearing his Achilles in the same slot last season, as the New York Jets visit Brock Purdy and the San Francisco 49ers.

Weeks 3, 4, 7 and 15 will each see two Monday night games, while two games with playoff implications will air on the Saturday, January 4th to begin Week 18. These games will be selected following the conclusion of Week 17. There will be no Monday night game on the final regular season weekend in order to provide more flexibility for the scheduling of the opening weekend of the NFL playoffs.

Thursday Night Football will air exclusively on Prime Video in 2024, kicking off its slate in Week 2 with an AFC East matchup between the Miami Dolphins and Buffalo Bills. Prime Video will broadcast 15 Thursday Night Football games between Weeks 2-17, excluding Thanksgiving night, and exclusively stream the second-ever NFL Black Friday game when the Chiefs host the Raiders in Week 13.

The first-ever NFL games streamed on Netflix will be played on Christmas Day, with Week 17 clashes between the Chiefs and Pittsburgh Steelers and the Ravens and Houston Texans. The deal with the NFL’s newest broadcast partner will also see Netflix stream at least one holiday game in 2025 and 2026.

NFL Network, meanwhile, will exclusively televise seven games, comprising the four International Series games in Europe and three games from the Week 17 slate on Saturday, December 28th.

Revealed earlier in the day, the schedule again features five international regular season games, with three in the UK, one in Germany and the aforementioned Eagles-Packers clash in Brazil.

As part of the league’s expansion of the regular season to 17 games, it was determined that, beginning with the 2022 season, teams from the conference whose teams were eligible for a ninth regular season home game would be among the designated group to play a neutral-site international game each year.

Following the Week 1 game in Brazil, three consecutive weeks with games in London begin at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium with the New York Jets and Minnesota Vikings facing off at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, seven days before the Chicago Bears host the Jacksonville Jaguars meet at the same venue. The Jaguars then revert to home team status in Week 7, when they welcome the New England Patriots to Wembley.

As part of the league’s commitment to playing regular season games in Germany, the NFL will conclude its international slate in Munich as the New York Giants meet the Carolina Panthers at Allianz Arena in Week 10.

The Madden Thanksgiving Celebration will feature a triple-header on Thursday, November 28th, kicking off with NFC North foes Chicago and Detroit in the Motor City. The late afternoon game will match two NFC East rivals in the Giants and Cowboys, while the festivities end with the Dolphins travelling to Green Bay.

The regular season will conclude with Week 18 over the weekend of 4th and 5th January. For the 15th consecutive year, all 16 games scheduled for the final week of the season are division contests, enhancing the potential for more games with playoff ramifications.

Fourteen games this season will be Super Bowl rematches, while nine are rematches from the 2023 playoffs, including a reprise of Super Bowl LVIII as the Chiefs visit San Francisco in Week 7. Both Conference Championship Games — Baltimore at Kansas City in Week 1 and Detroit at San Francisco in Week 17 — are also repeated, as are all four Divisional playoff games (Tampa Bay at Detroit in Week 2; Kansas City at Buffalo in Week 11; San Francisco at Green Bay in Week 12; and Baltimore at Houston in Week 17).

The top-two picks in the 2024 NFL Draft, Caleb Williams and Jayden Daniels, are scheduled to meet in Week 8, when the Bears visit Washington. Should both players start, it would mark the sixth time in NFL history that rookie starting quarterbacks selected with first and second overall face off. Williams and the Bears are also slated to play against number three overall pick Drake Maye and the New England Patriots in Week 10 and number four overall pick Marvin Harrison and the Arizona Cardinals in Week 9.

The NFL’s 32 teams will each play 17 games over 18 weeks. Byes will begin in Week 5 and end in Week 14. The 17th game will feature teams from opposing conferences that finished in the same standing within their respective divisions the previous season. The NFC will be the home conference for the 17th game in 2024.

There are approximately a quadrillion possible schedule combinations each NFL season and over 26,000 factors to take into consideration, such as stadium availability, travel requirements, primetime games, competitive fairness and division rivalries. Despite that, the NFL will continue to use ‘flexible scheduling’ to ensure exciting and meaningful games are available for viewing by the largest number of fans.

As in prior seasons, scheduling for the final weekend of the campaign has not yet been assigned across the two Saturday, 13 Sunday afternoon and one Sunday night slots. Specifics such as dates, start times and networks for Week 18 matchups will be determined and announced following the conclusion of Week 17.

Introduced in 2020 and continuing for a fifth-consecutive year, a total of 14 teams – seven each in the American and National Football Conferences – will make the postseason. The number one seed in each conference will receive a bye through the Wild Card round, while the remaining division champions in each conference with the best records will be seeded two through four, followed by the next three teams per conference with the best records. Since 1990 — a streak of 34 consecutive seasons — at least four teams that missed the previous year’s postseason qualified for the playoffs, including seven of the 14 playoff teams in 2022.

For the 2024 NFL regular-season schedule by week, click here.

For the 2024 NFL preseason schedule, click here.

To understood how opponents were determined for the 2024 season, click here.

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