NFL season kicks off with Super Bowl champion Chiefs hosting Lions; Jets' Rodgers on MNF
By ROB MAADDI
Patrick Mahomes and the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs will kick off the NFL season against the upstart Detroit Lions in a matchup of high-powered offenses and will host Jalen Hurts and the Philadelphia Eagles in a Super Bowl rematch on “Monday Night Football” in Week 11.
Aaron Rodgers will make his New York Jets debut in the first Monday night game of the season against the Buffalo Bills and later faces the Miami Dolphins in the NFL's first Black Friday game on Nov. 24.
Thanks to Rodgers' arrival in the Big Apple, the Jets will have six nationally televised games, including their first Sunday night game since 2011 when they take on the Chiefs on Oct. 1. That'll be the first ever Mahomes-Rodgers matchup.
“It’s not going to be monotonous with all the 1 o’clock games we’re used to,” Jets coach Robert Saleh said on NFL Network.
Coming off their second championship in four seasons, the Chiefs will host the Lions on Sept. 7 on “Thursday Night Football.” The Lions finished 9-8 last season after a 1-6 start and knocked Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers out of the playoffs with a 20-16 victory at Lambeau Field in the final regular-season game.
Mahomes, the two-time NFL MVP, led the Chiefs to a 38-35 comeback win over the Eagles in the Super Bowl. The teams will battle at Arrowhead Stadium on Nov. 20.
Fans will get their first look at Rodgers in his new green-and-white No. 8 Jets jersey when New York hosts Josh Allen and the Bills in an AFC East matchup on Sept. 11.
The NFL released the full schedule for its 104th season on Thursday night after revealing five international games and several others earlier in the day and Wednesday.
Other highlights include a rematch of the NFC championship game in Week 13 and a rematch of the AFC title game in Week 17. Hurts and the Eagles will host the San Francisco 49ers on Dec. 3. The Chiefs will host Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati Bengals on New Year's Eve.
The Eagles knocked quarterback Brock Purdy out of the conference title game on their way to a dominant 31-7 win. Purdy had elbow surgery in the offseason, but should be ready by the time the teams meet again.
The Thanksgiving tripleheader features three division games. It begins with Jordan Love and the Green Bay Packers visiting the Lions. The Dallas Cowboys then host the Washington Commanders and the Seattle Seahawks host the 49ers in prime time.
Mahomes and the Chiefs will host AFC West rival Las Vegas in the early game of the Christmas Day tripleheader. The Eagles will host the New York Giants in one of 14 playoff rematches on the 2023 schedule. Lamar Jackson and the Ravens wrap up Christmas action in San Francisco.
The New England Patriots also announced seven-time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady will be honored at the team's home opener against the Eagles on Sept. 10. Brady, who led the Patriots to six Super Bowl titles, retired in February after spending the last three seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
On Wednesday, the NFL announced that Trevor Lawrence and the Jacksonville Jaguars will become the first NFL team to play two international games in the same season when they spend back-to-back weeks in London.
The Jaguars will host the Atlanta Falcons at Wembley Stadium on Oct. 1 and visit the Bills at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Oct. 8. The Jaguars were set to play two designated home games in London in 2020 but the pandemic canceled those plans.
The Tennessee Titans will host the Baltimore Ravens at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Oct. 15. The Chiefs will host the Dolphins in Germany at Eintracht Frankfurt Stadium on Nov. 5. The Patriots will host the Indianapolis Colts on Nov. 12, also in Frankfurt.
Bryce Young and C.J. Stroud, the first two picks in the draft, are scheduled to meet in Week 8 when the Carolina Panthers host the Houston Texans.
There will be three Monday night doubleheaders in Weeks 2, 3, and 14.
The Eagles have the toughest strength of schedule based on last year’s standings. Their opponents had a .566 winning percentage in 2022. The Falcons, who play in the lowly NFC South, have the easiest schedule with an opponents' winning percentage of .417.
The NFL’s 18-week, 272-game regular-season schedule concludes with 16 division games in Week 18, including two on Saturday Jan. 6.
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Updated May 12, 2023