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2021 NFL Schedule: Release Date, TV Schedule, Known Opponents and More

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMay 11, 2021

El  tight end Rob Gronkowsk (izquierda) y el quarterback Tom Brady de los Buccaneers de Tampa Bay celebran tras vencer 31-9 a los Chiefs de Kansas City en el Super Bowl 55, el domingo 7 de febrero de 2021, en Tampa, Florida. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)
Ashley Landis/Associated Press

The NFL will release the first 17-game schedule in its history Wednesday night, with the reigning Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers set to host the 2021 regular-season opener in September.

Team owners approved the one-game increase in March, an option that became available as part of the collective bargaining agreement reached with the NFL Players Association in 2020. AFC teams will host an extra home game this year, a distinction that will rotate between the conferences each year.

"This is a monumental moment in NFL history," commissioner Roger Goodell said. "The CBA with the players and the recently completed media agreements provide the foundation for us to enhance the quality of the NFL experience for our fans. And one of the benefits of each team playing 17 regular-season games is the ability for us to continue to grow our game around the world."

Let's check out all of the important information for the schedule release along with a look at the opponents each team is set to face this fall. That's followed by a glance at some of the top games on the slate.

          

NFL Schedule Release Viewing Details

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When: Wednesday, May 12 at 8 p.m. ET

Watch: NFL Network

Live Stream: NFL.com

          

2021 Team-By-Team Opponents

Arizona Cardinals

Home: Rams, 49ers, Seahawks, Panthers, Packers, Texans, Colts, Vikings

Road: Rams, 49ers, Seahawks, Bears, Browns, Cowboys, Lions, Jaguars, Titans

              

Atlanta Falcons

Home: Panthers, Saints, Buccaneers, Lions, Patriots, Jets, Eagles, Washington

Road: Panthers, Saints, Buccaneers, Bills, Cowboys, Jaguars, Dolphins, Giants, 49ers

              

Baltimore Ravens

Home: Bengals, Browns, Steelers, Packers, Colts, Chiefs, Chargers, Rams, Vikings

Road: Bengals, Browns, Steelers, Bears, Broncos, Lions, Raiders, Dolphins

            

Buffalo Bills

Home: Dolphins, Patriots, Jets, Falcons, Panthers, Texans, Colts, Steelers, Washington

Road: Dolphins, Patriots, Jets, Jaguars, Chiefs, Saints, Buccaneers, Titans

              

Carolina Panthers

Home: Falcons, Saints, Buccaneers, Vikings, Patriots, Jets, Eagles, Washington

Road: Falcons, Saints, Buccaneers, Cardinals, Bills, Cowboys, Texans, Dolphins, Giants

             

Chicago Bears

Home: Lions, Packers, Vikings, Cardinals, Ravens, Bengals, Giants, 49ers

Road: Lions, Packers, Vikings, Browns, Raiders, Rams, Steelers, Seahawks, Buccaneers

                

Cincinnati Bengals

Home: Ravens, Browns, Steelers, Packers, Jaguars, Chiefs, Chargers, Vikings, 49ers

Road: Ravens, Browns, Steelers, Bears, Broncos, Lions, Raiders, Jets

              

Cleveland Browns

Home: Ravens, Bengals, Steelers, Cardinals, Bears, Broncos, Lions, Texans, Raiders

Road: Ravens, Bengals, Steelers, Packers, Chiefs, Chargers, Vikings, Patriots

              

Dallas Cowboys

Home: Giants, Eagles, Washington, Cardinals, Falcons, Panthers, Broncos, Raiders

Road: Giants, Eagles, Washington, Chiefs, Chargers, Vikings, Patriots, Saints, Buccaneers

              

Denver Broncos

Home: Chiefs, Raiders, Chargers, Ravens, Bengals, Lions, Jets, Eagles, Washington

Road: Chiefs, Raiders, Chargers, Browns, Cowboys, Jaguars, Giants, Steelers

              

Detroit Lions

Home: Bears, Packers, Vikings, Cardinals, Ravens, Bengals, Eagles, 49ers

Road: Bears, Packers, Vikings, Falcons, Browns, Broncos, Rams, Steelers, Seahawks

           

Green Bay Packers

Home: Bears, Lions, Vikings, Browns, Rams, Steelers, Seahawks, Washington

Road: Bears, Lions, Vikings, Cardinals, Ravens, Bengals, Chiefs, Saints, 49ers

            

Houston Texans

Home: Colts, Jaguars, Titans, Panthers, Chargers, Rams, Patriots, Jets, Seahawks

Road: Colts, Jaguars, Titans, Cardinals, Bills, Browns, Dolphins, 49ers

             

Indianapolis Colts

Home: Texans, Jaguars, Titans, Raiders, Rams, Patriots, Jets, Seahawks, Buccaneers

Road: Texans, Jaguars, Titans, Cardinals, Ravens, Bills, Dolphins, 49ers

              

Jacksonville Jaguars

Home: Texans, Colts, Titans, Falcons, Cardinals, Bills, Broncos, Dolphins, 49ers

Road: Texans, Colts, Titans, Bengals, Rams, Patriots, Jets, Seahawks

             

Kansas City Chiefs

Home: Broncos, Raiders, Chargers, Bills, Browns, Cowboys, Packers, Giants, Steelers

Road: Broncos, Raiders, Chargers, Ravens, Bengals, Eagles, Titans, Washington

            

Las Vegas Raiders

Home: Broncos, Chiefs, Chargers, Ravens, Bears, Bengals, Dolphins, Eagles, Washington

Road: Broncos, Chiefs, Chargers, Browns, Cowboys, Colts, Giants, Steelers

            

Los Angeles Chargers

Home: Broncos, Chiefs, Raiders, Browns, Cowboys, Vikings, Patriots, Giants, Steelers

Road: Broncos, Chiefs, Raiders, Ravens, Bengals, Texans, Eagles, Washington

           

Los Angeles Rams

Home: Cardinals, 49ers, Seahawks, Bears, Lions, Jaguars, Buccaneers, Titans

Road: Cardinals, 49ers, Seahawks, Ravens, Packers, Texans, Colts, Vikings, Giants

            

Miami Dolphins

Home: Bills, Patriots, Jets, Falcons, Ravens, Panthers, Texans, Colts, Giants

Road: Bills, Patriots, Jets, Jaguars, Raiders, Saints, Buccaneers, Titans

              

Minnesota Vikings

Home: Bears, Lions, Packers, Browns, Cowboys, Rams, Steelers, Seahawks

Road: Bears, Lions, Packers, Cardinals, Ravens, Panthers, Bengals, Chargers, 49ers

           

New England Patriots

Home: Bills, Dolphins, Jets, Browns, Cowboys, Jaguars, Saints, Buccaneers, Titans

Road: Bills, Dolphins, Jets, Falcons, Panthers, Texans, Colts, Chargers

            

New Orleans Saints

Home: Falcons, Panthers, Buccaneers, Bills, Cowboys, Packers, Dolphins, Giants

Road: Falcons, Panthers, Buccaneers, Patriots, Jets, Eagles, Seahawks, Titans, Washington

             

New York Giants

Home: Cowboys, Eagles, Washington, Falcons, Panthers, Broncos, Raiders, Rams

Road: Cowboys, Eagles, Washington, Bears, Chiefs, Chargers, Dolphins, Saints, Buccaneers

              

New York Jets

Home: Bills, Dolphins, Patriots, Bengals, Jaguars, Saints, Eagles, Buccaneers, Titans

Road: Bills, Dolphins, Patriots, Falcons, Panthers, Broncos, Texans, Colts

           

Philadelphia Eagles

Home: Cowboys, Giants, Washington, Chiefs, Chargers, Saints, 49ers, Buccaneers

Road: Cowboys, Giants, Washington, Falcons, Panthers, Broncos, Lions, Raiders, Jets

            

Pittsburgh Steelers

Home: Ravens, Bengals, Browns, Bears, Broncos, Lions, Raiders, Seahawks, Titans

Road: Ravens, Bengals, Browns, Bills, Packers, Chiefs, Chargers, Vikings

            

San Francisco 49ers

Home: Cardinals, Rams, Seahawks, Falcons, Packers, Texans, Colts, Vikings

Road: Cardinals, Rams, Seahawks, Bears, Bengals, Lions, Jaguars, Eagles, Titans

            

Seattle Seahawks

Home: Cardinals, Rams, 49ers, Bears, Lions, Jaguars, Saints, Titans

Road: Cardinals, Rams, 49ers, Packers, Texans, Colts, Vikings, Steelers, Washington

           

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Home: Falcons, Panthers, Saints, Bills, Bears, Cowboys, Dolphins, Giants

Road: Falcons, Panthers, Saints, Colts, Rams, Patriots, Jets, Eagles, Washington

           

Tennessee Titans

Home: Texans, Colts, Jaguars, Cardinals, Bills, Chiefs, Dolphins, Saints, 49ers

Road: Texans, Colts, Jaguars, Rams, Patriots, Jets, Steelers, Seahawks

            

Washington Football Team

Home: Cowboys, Giants, Eagles, Chiefs, Chargers, Saints, Seahawks, Buccaneers

Road: Cowboys, Giants, Eagles, Falcons, Bills, Panthers, Broncos, Packers, Raiders

               

Top Games To Watch In 2021

Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Buffalo Bills

The Bucs have a handful of different possible opponents in the season opener. A clash with the Dallas Cowboys, "America's Team," would generate plenty of attention, while going up against an NFC rival like the Chicago Bears or New Orleans Saints would be interesting given their quarterback changes.

In terms of the best possible game, however, the Bills are the slam dunk choice.

Buffalo is coming off a 13-3 season, its best record since 1991, and it advanced to the AFC Championship Game for the first time since 1993. Quarterback Josh Allen was one of last year's breakout stars en route to finishing second to the Green Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers in MVP voting.

Both the Buccaneers and Bills were able to retain a vast majority of the talent that guided them deep into last year's playoffs, making them chief title contenders once again heading into 2021. And the star power of Tom Brady and Allen makes the game an easy sell to kick off the next campaign.

          

Jacksonville Jaguars vs. New York Jets

The Jaguars selected Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence with the first overall pick in the 2021 NFL draft, and the Jets followed minutes later by taking BYU signal-caller Zach Wilson at No. 2. Their first head-to-head meeting could be the start of a long-term rivalry.

The prized prospects reached the top of the draft class in different ways.

Lawrence has been on the NFL radar since high school when he was a 5-star recruit, and his three college seasons with the Tigers only further enhanced his status as a once-in-a-decade talent. He's the most surefire prospect since Andrew Luck came out of Stanford in 2012.

Wilson's stock faded in 2019 when he threw 11 touchdowns and nine interceptions after undergoing shoulder surgery earlier that year. He bounced back in a major way last season, tallying 33 TDs and just three picks in 12 games while displaying high-end arm talent.

Neither the Jags nor the Jets appear to be on a Super Bowl level quite yet, but the front offices will hope the quarterbacks' matchup this year is a preview of a future showdown deep in the AFC playoffs.

         

Kansas City Chiefs vs. Baltimore Ravens

The Chiefs and Ravens have combined to post a 73-23 record over the past three seasons to emerge as powerhouses in the AFC, though they've yet to meet in the postseason.

Kansas City has won all three of the regular-season encounters over that span, though they've been highly competitive. It won in overtime in 2018 and by five in 2019. Last year's game ended 34-20, but Baltimore was within a touchdown inside the final 10 minutes.

It's another matchup that centers around a premier quarterback battle, in this case the Chiefs' Patrick Mahomes and Ravens' Lamar Jackson, which isn't a surprise given the unmatched importance of the position in the modern game.

K.C. and Baltimore figure to rank among the top clubs in the AFC once again in 2021, and their regular-season meeting could end up playing a crucial role in the race for the top seed and the reward of having the conference's only bye during the first round of the playoffs.

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