Wednesday night was another step to us getting closer to football season with the NFL releasing regular season schedules.
We’ve known who each team will play after the end of last regular season but now we know when the games will be played.
The schedules were officially released Wednesday night after hours of rumors and leaks were popping up on Twitter and Reddit. Some were legit like the Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants playing each other on opening day for the sixth time in eight years. Others like the Minnesota Vikings and Philadelphia Eagles facing off in the Thanksgiving game turned out to be false.
Once 7 p.m. rolled around, the full schedules were released.
The Kanas City Chiefs announced their schedule with history in mind. This year is the team’s 60th season and each game announcement had highlights from the team’s past against that team.
The 2019 team will look to continue the success of the last three years and win another AFC West.
Kansas City has a tough schedule this year with nine teams that have made the playoffs in the last two seasons facing the Chiefs. Chiefs fans will also have to prepare for late nights with the team playing in five primetime games, tied with nine others for the most this year.
The Chiefs open the year at the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sept. 8. After embarrassing the Jags’ defense last year, expect Jalen Ramsey and the rest of the defense to look to redeem themselves. This should hopefully be a better game than last year. The team will travel the following week to take on the Oakland Raiders on Sept. 15. This could potentially be the final time Kansas City plays at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum with the Raiders scheduled to move to Las Vegas next year.
Kansas City will host the Baltimore Ravens in Week 3 on Sept. 22 for their first home game of the year. Week 4 will see the team going to Detroit for the first time since 2011 on Sept. 29. The team will return home for the first of three primetime games in four weeks against the Colts on “Sunday Night Football.” The Oct. 6 game against the Colts features another team looking to rebound after being embarrassed by the Chiefs a year ago. Another home game against the Texans on Oct. 13 will follow before a quick turnaround and a trip to Denver for a Thursday night clash with the Broncos on Oct. 17.
Kansas City will then host NFC North teams in back-to-back weeks when the Packers and Vikings come to town. The Sunday night battle with Aaron Rodgers on Oct. 27 is potentially the only time we will see Rodgers and Mahomes play besides a potential Super Bowl. The Vikings game the following week on Nov. 3 is exciting as the stellar Chiefs offense will face another stingy defense with the Vikings.
The Chiefs will spend the next two weeks on the road going to Tennessee on Nov. 10 and traveling to Mexico City to take on the Chargers on Nov. 18. Hopefully this Monday night game won’t get moved like last year. The team gets to spend Thanksgiving weekend at home for their bye week before hosting the Raiders on Dec. 1. The following week, KC travels to New England for another matchup with the Patriots as the Chiefs look to avenge both losses from a year ago. On Dec. 15, the Chiefs will host Denver. Kansas City will then travel to Chicago to face the Bears in another primetime game on Dec. 22. The regular season will conclude with the team hosting the Chargers on Dec. 29.
This schedule features some tough stretches for KC. With more than half of the schedule having recent playoff teams, including six from a year ago, the Chiefs will have to work hard to get to 12-4 again. The team also will have to face some of the best defenses in the NFL. The Vikings, Ravens, Jaguars and Bears have been some of the NFL’s best defenses over the last couple seasons. These teams have all offseason to study Mahomes, Tyreek Hill and this offense to look for potential ways to shut the team down. That mixed with the question marks still on defense give Kansas City a tough road to get back to the postseason. If I had to pick a record right now, I would say the team will go either 10-6 or 11-5.
Looking back at the other schedule releases, a more recent trend is for teams to announce the schedule in fun and creative ways. Only a few teams were alike with their announcements but most were fun. The best would have to be the Carolina Panthers. The team announced the schedule using video games. Each week was a different video game from Pitfall to Words With Friends. It was incredible. Two clever ones were used to announce their games with the Jaguars and Buccaneers. The Panthers and Jaguars came in the NFL in 1995 so the team used Madden NFL 95. This is a slightly inaccurate use though due to Madden NFL 95 coming out in 1994. Using Madden NFL 96 would have been more accurate but it was still great. The following week, the team plays against the Buccaneers in London so the team mimicked the team selection screen of FIFA 2012. To add to it, the Panthers’ virtual player in this was Efe Obada. Obada is a Nigerian-born English football player. After escaping human trafficking, Obada started to play football. In 2018, he became the first player from the NFL International Pathway program to make a 53-man roster.
My other favorite was the Jacksonville Jaguars. Jacksonville’s made me laugh out loud multiple times. The team parodied an infomercial with kicker Josh Lambo serving as the host. The team did not hold back with jabs at teams. For the Saints game, it was a knockoff shammy to poke fun at the Saints’ complaints about the lack of pass interference called in the NFC title game. The team gave a Chargers fan headphones to simulate 60,000 fans supporting him due to the Chargers’ home games being filled with more fans of other teams than Chargers fans. It also poked fun at the butt fumble with the Jets and the Colts’ banner in Lucas Oil Stadium for making the AFC Championship in 2014. The best one was referencing the Falcons blowing a 28-3 lead in Super Bowl 51.
The Chargers had a goofy one with stock videos for each team. The Lions did clips from “The Office,” the Ravens had a commercial similar to a monster truck show ad and the Falcons were one of three teams to use a “Game of Thrones” themed video. It also poked fun at the Saints with a Ram running into a Saints fan and no penalty being called. The Vikings were timely by using a haiku poem for each team read by radio announcer Paul Allen. It was a nice idea but it fell flat. The weirdest of the bunch was the Cowboys. Dallas used autonomous sensory meridian response to announce the schedule. ASMR is a popular trend online where the intent is to focus on making satisfying sounds. Each team had something different. From mixing buffalo wings for the Bills to dropping a toy dolphin into a cup of water for Miami.
All of these videos can be found on the teams’ Twitter pages.
Luke Peterson is the sports editor for the Leavenworth Times. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org