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AP Photo/D. Ross Cameron

Top Games On The 2020 NFL Regular Season Schedule

The full 2020 NFL schedule has been released, and it’s not too early to jump into it and look at the top games coming up this fall. I didn’t want to have too many divisional games, but there are a few standouts that are worth circling on your calendar. Aside from the Texans-Chiefs season opener on Thursday, September 10, these are among the top NFL games to watch in 2020.


Buccaneers vs. Saints

Week 1 | 9/13 | 4:25 PM ET


FOX has the best start they could hope for in their slate of Week 1 games, as “America’s Game of the Week” in the late-afternoon window will feature future Hall of Fame quarterbacks Tom Brady and Drew Brees, with Brady playing his first game with his new team after spending 20 years with the Patriots. The Saints are likely to enter the year as the NFC South favorites, but I believe the Buccaneers should be both the division favorite and the conference favorite. Regardless, it’ll be an awesome game on the first Sunday of the NFL season.


Saints vs. Raiders

Week 2 | 9/21 | 8:15 PM ET (Mon.)


The Raiders will start their time in Las Vegas on the road in Week 1, but they’ll get to open up the brand-new Allegiant Stadium for the Monday Night Football game in Week 2. It won’t be an easy task facing the Saints, but Jon Gruden and company will look to set the tone in their new digs after leaving the old Black Hole for a new Black Hole in a stadium that is being nicknamed the “Death Star”—the energy is going to be through the roof in the place. The Raiders have a winnable road game to open the year at Carolina, so they could have a prime opportunity for a 2-0 start.


Chiefs vs. Ravens

Week 3 | 9/28 | 8:15 PM ET (Mon.)


The Monday night schedule has been subpar in recent years, but the NFL gave ESPN a much, much better set of matchups to work with in 2020, with potentially the best two games from Weeks 2 and 3. The Chiefs and the Ravens are arguably the top two teams in the league entering the year, and the contest will feature the previous two NFL MVPs in Lamar Jackson and Patrick Mahomes. There is going to be a ton of speed and athleticism on the field for both squads.


Eagles vs. Steelers

Week 5 | 10/11 | 1:00 PM ET


The Battle of Pennsylvania happens every four years in the NFL, and both the Eagles and the Steelers are expected to be legitimate postseason contenders this season. The home team has won each of the four matchups dating back to 2004, so Philadelphia will look to change that as they travel to Heinz Field to face a well-rounded team that will hopefully be led by a healthy Ben Roethlisberger at quarterback.


Chiefs vs. Bills

Week 6 | 10/15 | 8:20 PM ET (Thu.)


The Bills have a chance to show people they are for real this season, and the NFL is giving them four primetime matchups including a Thursday Night Football game when they’ll play host to the defending champion Chiefs. Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen have talked about seeing who can throw the football further, and the young playmaking quarterbacks should deliver an exciting game to kickoff Wek 6.


Buccaneers vs. Raiders

Week 7 | 10/25 | 8:20 PM ET


I am optimistic about the Raiders’ chances of taking a step forward in 2020, but their Week 7 Sunday night showdown with Tom Brady and the Buccaneers should be entertaining no matter how good Vegas is. Jon Gruden won a championship with Tampa Bay, and Brady’s first Super Bowl title came after a victory over Oakland in the “Tuck Rule” game. And with the game being played in the aforementioned Allegiant Stadium on the week before Halloween, Bucs-Raiders has a chance to be a blast. I’m sure there will be plenty of people dressed as Darth Vader that night.


Ravens vs. Steelers

Week 12 | 11/26 | 8:20 PM ET (Thu.)


We won’t get a third consecutive year of Falcons versus Saints on Thanksgiving Night, and an AFC North showdown between the Ravens and the Steelers will look to top it. Pittsburgh did about as well as any team at containing Lamar Jackson last year, and Heinz Field is not an easy place to win. Ideally, the division will be very close, placing a premium on the Thanksgiving nightcap.


Vikings vs. Saints

Week 16 | 12/25 | 4:30 PM ET (Fri.)


Not only do we get our usual Thanksgiving football in 2020, but Christmas Day will feature the latest chapter in the recent Vikings-Saints rivalry. The game on the joyous holiday is a rematch from two of the past three postseasons (the Vikings winning both in walk-off fashion), so it should be fun even if the teams aren’t in the playoff picture.


Bills vs. Patriots

Week 16 | 12/28 | 8:15 PM ET (Mon.)


Even with a new era starting, the Patriots cannot be left out among the NFL’s best games in 2020. While New England will have a few anticipated games against the NFC West and top teams in the AFC, their dominant hold on the AFC East could come down to a Week 16 Monday nighter against the Bills in Foxboro. Buffalo nearly pulled off a road upset at New England in late December last season.


Seahawks vs. 49ers

Week 17 | 1/3 | 4:25 PM ET


Last season’s NFL playoffs might have played out much differently if the Seahawks weren’t stopped inches short of the goal line in last year’s Week 17 loss to the 49ers, giving San Francisco the No. 1 seed on their way to a Super Bowl appearance. The NFL put the two NFC West rivals back together in the final week of the regular season this year, and football fans would be happy if it’s flexed into the Sunday night timeslot again.


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