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Defending Super Bowl Champs Face Tough Early Season Contests in 2020

Photo by Jamie Squire-Getty Images

Nobody ever said that defending a Super Bowl title is ever easy. So when the NFL released its schedule, they decided to test the defending Super Bowl champions Kansas City Chiefs right out of the gate. This includes the traditional Thursday night opener against the Houston Texans. Here is the breakdown of their schedule:

Kansas City Chiefs 2020 Schedule

Sept. 10: vs. Texans

Sept. 20: at Chargers

Sept. 28: at Ravens

Oct. 4: vs. Patriots

Oct. 11: vs. Raiders

Oct. 15: at Bills

Oct. 25: at Broncos

Nov. 1: vs. Jets

Nov. 8: vs. Panthers

Nov. 15: Bye

Nov. 22: at Raiders

Nov. 29: at Buccaneers

Dec. 6: vs. Broncos

Dec. 13: at Dolphins

Dec. 20: at Saints

Dec. 27: vs. Falcons

Jan. 3: vs. Chargers

Tough Early Season Match-ups

The Chiefs start the season by hosting the Houston Texans in a rematch of last year’s AFC Divisional contest, which saw the Chiefs overcome a 24-0 deficit before defeating the Texans 51-31. It marked the fourth-largest comeback in NFL postseason history.  They also get to rub salt in that wound as Kansas City will celebrate its Super Bowl LIV victory that night by hoisting their championship flag.

Kansas City will travel to Baltimore to take on the Ravens on Monday Night Football in Week 3, setting up another high-profile quarterback clash between Patrick Mahomes and NFL MVP Lamar Jackson. Interestingly enough, the Ravens have lost just three regular-season games in Jackson’s career as a starter and the Chiefs are responsible for two of them.

Throw in the Patriots and that means that three of their first four opponents made the postseason last year as divisional winners and combined for a 36-12 record. The total schedule strength for their opponents based on 2019 records is 128-128 (.500), 18th most difficult in the league.

Five prime time matchups

The Chiefs are featured on prime-time with the NFL allotted a maximum of five times in 2020.  However, three of those nationally televised contests are on the road. After their Monday night game, the Chiefs get a Week 6 match-up against the Buffalo Bills on Thursday Night Football, which airs on the NFL Network and FOX, in what may feature the very fired-up Bills fan base. The prime-time slate continues with the Chief’s first-ever game in Las Vegas for a divisional bout against the Raiders on Sunday Night Football in Week 11. Finally, Kansas City will return to the national stage in Week 13 as they will host another division rival, the Denver Broncos, on Sunday Night Football.

Two big NFC games after the bye

The most compelling game comes in Week 15 with a showdown between the Chiefs and New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, which many experts have predicted could be a Super Bowl preview. Many story-lines could be featured in this game. The Chiefs also have a tilt with the new-look Tampa Bay Buccaneers takes place in Week 12 in Florida. In addition to the acquisition of Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski, the Buccaneers already had several talented players in place, including wide receivers Chris Godwin and Mike Evans.

“The releasing of the 2020 NFL schedule reinforces each year that we have the opportunity to compete against some of the great teams in this league,” Chiefs Head Coach Andy Reid said. “I know our organization and fans get excited for these challenges. We look forward to raising last year’s Super Bowl championship banner and all that comes with defending our title in the 2020 season.”


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