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Sports

NFL: 2021 Schedule Notes

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NFL: 2021 Schedule Notes

2021-05-17 10:21:16

 

-posted by Daniel Mogollon, Staff Writer; Image: New York Jets first-round draft pick Zach Wilson attempts pass during NFL rookie camp. (Image Source: Bill Kostroun/Associated Press)

Schedule notes for the upcoming 2021 NFL season:

• Fifteen games will be Super Bowl rematches.

• Aaron Rodgers, the 2020 NFL MVP, and Lamar Jackson, the 2019 NFL MVP, are scheduled to meet for the first time in their careers when the Green Bay Packers travel to the Baltimore Ravens in Week 15 (1:00 PM ET, FOX).

• On Sunday Night Football in Week 4, Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will travel to New England (8:20 PM ET, NBC), where Brady won six Super Bowls with the Patriots. He can become the fourth quarterback in league history to defeat all 32 teams.

• The top two picks in the 2021 NFL Draft, Trevor Lawrence and Zach Wilson, are scheduled to meet in Week 16 when the Jacksonville Jaguars travel to play the New York Jets (1:00 PM ET, CBS). If both players start, it will mark the fourth game in NFL history between rookie starting quarterbacks selected first and second overall.

• Saquon Barkley, Odell Beckham Jr., Christian McCaffrey and Dak Prescott are among the exciting group of stars expected to return to the field in 2021.

“Flexible scheduling” will be used in Weeks 11-18. Additionally, in Weeks 5-10, flexible scheduling may be used in no more than two weeks. In Weeks 5-17, the schedule lists the games tentatively set for Sunday Night Football on NBC. Only Sunday afternoon games are eligible to be moved to Sunday night, in which case the tentatively scheduled Sunday night game would be moved to an afternoon start time.

Flexible scheduling will not be applied to games airing on Thursday or Monday nights.

In Week 15, two of the five matchups designated as TBD will be played on Saturday with the remainder to be played on Sunday. Specific dates and start times for such designated Week 15 matchups will be determined and announced no later than four weeks prior to game day.

For Week 18, two Saturday games and the Sunday night game will be announced no later than six days prior to January 9. The schedule does not list Saturday games or a Sunday night game in Week 18, but games with playoff implications will be moved to those time slots. Flexible scheduling ensures quality matchups in all Sunday time slots in those weeks and give “surprise” teams a chance to play their way into primetime. In Week 18, two games will be played on Saturday, one at 4:30 PM ET and one at 8:15 PM ET with the remainder to be played on Sunday afternoon at 1:00 PM ET and 4:25 PM ET, and one matchup to be played on Sunday night at 8:20 PM ET. Specific dates and start times for Week 18 matchups will be determined and announced following the conclusion of Week 17.

Introduced last year and continuing in 2021, a total of 14 teams – seven each in the American and National Football Conferences – will make the postseason. The No. 1 seed in each conference will receive a bye in the Wild Card round. The remaining division champions in each conference with the best records will be seeded 2, 3, and 4, followed by the next three teams per conference with the best records seeded 5, 6, and 7.

Since 1990 – a streak of 31 consecutive seasons – at least four new teams have qualified for the playoffs that missed the postseason the year before, including seven of the 14 playoff teams in 2020.

AFC and NFC Wild Card games will feature the 2 seed hosting the 7 seed, the 3 seed hosting the 6 seed and the 4 seed hosting the 5 seed.

Wild Card Weekend for the 2021 season will feature six games, starting on Saturday, January 15.

Wild Card Weekend winners join the top seeds in each conference in the Divisional Playoffs on Saturday and Sunday, January 22-23. The AFC and NFC Championship Games, presented by Intuit TurboTax Live, will be played on Sunday, January 30. The winners meet two weeks later on Sunday, February 13, in Super Bowl LVI at Los Angeles’ SoFi Stadium (NBC), marking the first time the league’s final game is played in the Los Angeles area since Super Bowl XXVII in 1993.

The NFL is the only sports league that presents all regular-season and postseason games on free, over-the-air television in local markets. All postseason games are televised nationally.

Westwood One will broadcast on radio all NFL primetime games, the three Thanksgiving Day games and the entire NFL playoffs. SiriusXM subscribers will have access to every live NFL game, as well as exclusive 24/7 talk channel coverage on SXM NFL Radio.

Fans can experience exciting NFL matchups in person by visiting their favorite team’s website, www.nfl.com/tickets, or on any NFL licensed ticketing channel. When purchasing tickets, be sure to look for the authenticated NFL ticket logo or the NFL shield.

 

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