2020 New Orleans Saints Schedule: Full Listing of Dates, Times and TV InfoMay 7, 2020
The New Orleans Saints have won three straight NFC South titles, but no team has seen its last three seasons end more heartbreakingly.
The Saints' 2019 campaign ended in a 26-20 overtime wild-card loss to the visiting Minnesota Vikings—marking the third year in a row New Orleans' season ended on the last possession:
New Orleans saw 2018 end with a controversial non-call on blatant pass interference by the Los Angeles Rams in the 2019 NFC Championship Game. The Rams prevailed 26-23 in overtime. The Saints' 2017 campaign ended when the Vikings executed the "Minneapolis Miracle" as time expired in regulation to oust New Orleans 29-24 in the divisional round.
Before the Saints can reverse their recent postseason misfortunes, they will navigate what CBSSports.com's John Breech ranked as the league's 24th-toughest schedule with opponents sporting a combined 2019 record of 125-130-1.
Below is the Saints' full 2020 schedule, as well as a deeper look at the roster and key matchups.
Saints' 2020 Schedule
The Saints' headlining offseason move was re-signing future Hall of Fame quarterback Drew Brees on a two-year, $50 million contract.
The 41-year-old former All-Pro missed five games last season with a thumb injury, and Teddy Bridgewater kept the Saints afloat with a 5-0 record as the fill-in starter. Bridgewater departed for the Carolina Panthers in free agency, leaving Taysom Hill as Brees' backup.
Following the 2020 draft, in which the Saints added four players, New Orleans signed 2015 top overall pick Jameis Winston to a one-year contract. The 26-year-old quarterback will presumably allow Hill to be used more creatively and provide extra security behind Brees:
Charles Robinson @CharlesRobinson
Sources tell Yahoo Sports the #Saints are finalizing a 1-year deal with free agent QB Jameis Winston. New Orleans hopes to continue maximizing Taysom Hill's versatility on gameday while mitigating some risk in exposing Drew Brees' backup to injury. Story: https://t.co/srblaQWfhI https://t.co/D2jNWL2446
Head coach Sean Payton disclosed how the organization views Hill's unique role while visiting ESPN's Get Up! on March 31:
"I think the role is pretty clear, and first and foremost, we still view him as a quarterback, and we spent a lot of time this offseason discussing our vision for him this season at quarterback, but then also at the F-position. And what I mean by that ... that slash, tight end, wide receiver, he's a tremendous blocker, he's physical. I don't think people realize how fast he is. He's probably one of the three or four fastest guys on the team. So, he'll play that F-position, he'll certainly be involved in the kicking game. It's one of the things he takes pride in and is very good at.
"And then the unique situation with our team and with our quarterback, Drew Brees is, he's announced he's coming back for his final season, I think Taysom sees himself as being a starting quarterback in this league and we do too."
Hill might be the starting quarterback of the future in New Orleans, but it will undoubtedly still be Brees' team in 2020.
Veteran wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders signed a two-year deal with the Saints in March, joining an already-loaded attack:
All-Pro receiver Michael Thomas led the league with 149 catches—a single-season record—and 1,725 receiving yards alongside a career-high nine touchdowns. Sanders' arrival will take pressure off Thomas, as will the two-headed running attack of Alvin Kamara and Latavius Murray. The two backs carried the ball a combined 317 times for 1,434 yards and 10 touchdowns in 2019.
The Saints also made moves in their secondary by replacing safety Vonn Bell with Malcolm Jenkins:
New Orleans sported the seventh-ranked passing offense and 16th-ranked ground game, while the defense ranked 13th against the pass and 29th against the run last season.
Everybody has been looking forward to watching Brees square off with Tom Brady twice in 2020 since Brady departed New England for a two-year contract with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in March. The two teams will meet in Weeks 1 and 9.
The Bucs last beat New Orleans in Week 1 of 2018.
Brady and Brees last played in 2017. The Patriots won 36-20.
Outside of the NFC South, Brees has marquee quarterback matchups with two-time NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers and Super Bowl LIV MVP Patrick Mahomes.
The Saints also have a rematch with the Vikings, who are responsible for ending their 2017 and '19 seasons.