The New York Jets have gone from being buried in the afternoon to loaded with nationally televised appearances.
The NFL released its 272-game schedule for 2023 on Thursday night, and the addition of Aaron Rodgers has turned New York into a marquee team even before the former Green Bay Packers star plays in a single game.
Though the NFL slate includes a Super Bowl rematch between the victorious Kansas City Chiefs and runner-up Philadelphia Eagles on Nov. 20 at Kansas City in Week 11, it is the Jets stealing the show.
“I think it’s exciting,” New York coach Robert Saleh said on NFL Network. “It’s not going to be monotonous with all 1 o’clock games like we’re used to, but change is good. But we’ve got to take them all at a time.”
The Rodgers era begins with the Jets hosting Josh Allen and the AFC East rival Buffalo Bills in Week 1 on Monday night. The other national telecasts are Week 4 against Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs (Sunday night), Week 9 vs. the Los Angeles Chargers (MNF), Week 10 at the Las Vegas Raiders (SNF), Week 12 against the Miami Dolphins (Black Friday on Amazon Prime Video) and Week 17 at the Cleveland Browns (Thursday night).
“We acknowledge the fact that there’s a lot of excitement about the football team and that there’s a lot of talk outside the building of what we’re capable of and all the expectations, which is fine,” Saleh said. “… At the end of the day, we still have to take care of the moment and dominate day to day and just try to get better every day.”
The Chiefs also open the NFL season at home on Sept. 7 when they face the Detroit Lions in one of their NFL-high eight exclusive television appearances.
“I like the schedule. We have to play them somewhere and sometime,” Kansas City coach Andy Reid said on NFL Network. “We start off with Detroit and Detroit is a heck of a football team. They showed that at the end of the season. That’s great competition there.”
In Week 17 on Dec. 31, Kansas City will also have another clash with the Cincinnati Bengals, the team it has faced in back-to-back AFC Championship games. The teams split those matchups.
The Chiefs and Bills square off on Dec. 10, marking the fifth straight time over four seasons (including playoffs) that the teams will meet in Kansas City.
The Eagles have a tough three-game stretch against fellow championship contenders that begins with the clash against the Chiefs. Philadelphia follows with home games against the Bills and San Francisco 49ers. The Eagles beat San Francisco in last season’s NFC title game.
The 49ers will host the Dallas Cowboys in Week 5. San Francisco has eliminated Dallas from the playoffs in each of the past two seasons.
The Green Bay Packers will visit the Chicago Bears in Week 1 when Jordan Love is slated to be the starter as the successor to Rodgers.
The New England Patriots open up the season against the Eagles on a day in which they plan to honor former quarterback Tom Brady.
The Los Angeles Rams and Cincinnati Bengals — who played in the Super Bowl two seasons ago — meet in Week 3 at Cincinnati on “Monday Night Football.”
The Thanksgiving Day slate features the Packers visiting the Lions on FOX, the Washington Commanders playing at the Cowboys on CBS and the 49ers playing in Seattle against the Seahawks in the NBC night-time affair.
There will be a Christmas Day tripleheader for just the second time. The Raiders visit the Chiefs on CBS, the New York Giants are at the Philadelphia Eagles on FOX and the Baltimore Ravens and 49ers will be playing at night in San Francisco on ABC.
The Jacksonville Jaguars will become the first NFL team to play consecutive games in London. They host the Atlanta Falcons at Wembley Stadium in Week 4 and then square off against the Buffalo Bills at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in Week 5.
“We have a great fan base over there and it’s good for our team,” Jaguars coach Doug Pederson said on NFL Network. “It’s good for team to showcase themselves in the UK. We’re excited.”
Pederson noted one crucial element about the two games — Buffalo is the home team in Week 5.
“I’d rather play Buffalo in London than maybe in Buffalo at the end of the season,” Pederson said.
The Baltimore Ravens and host Tennessee Titans play at Tottenham in Week 6. There are also two games in Frankfurt Stadium in Germany. The Miami Dolphins play the host Chiefs there in Week 9 and the Indianapolis Colts and host Patriots play in Week 10.
Former Chiefs star receiver Tyreek Hill of the Dolphins will certainly be looking to make some noise.
“Tyreek is a heck of a football player,” Reid said. “He had a great year (for the Dolphins) and he sure had a great career here.”
–Field Level Media