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Kansas City Chiefs to host Baltimore Ravens in first game of 2024 NFL season

The team’s road to a potential third straight Super Bowl title begins with a marquee matchup against another NFL powerhouse with championship aspirations.
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/ Source: TODAY

The Kansas City Chiefs’ quest for a third consecutive Super Bowl will begin in front of the entire country. The Chiefs will open the 2024 NFL campaign by playing in the first game of the season, when they host the Baltimore Ravens.

The game will take place Thursday, Sept. 5, on NBC and Peacock, which shares a parent company with NBC News.

Traditionally, the defending Super Bowl champion plays in the first game of the season, usually on Thursday night of the opening weekend, although that is not always the case.

The rest of the NFL schedule will be announced on May 15 on the NFL Network and Peacock.

This opening matchup is a stellar one. The Chiefs defeated the Ravens in Baltimore last season in the AFC championship game, 17-10. The Ravens, led by their quarterback and 2023 NFL MVP Lamar Jackson, were the top seed in the AFC, but the Chiefs played a stout defensive game to earn the win and advance to the Super Bowl, where they edged the San Francisco 49ers in overtime, 25-22.

The Chiefs are led by a relentless defense, as well as star quarterback Patrick Mahomes and tight end Travis Kelce, whose profile soared last year amid his relationship with girlfriend Taylor Swift.

Mahomes and Kelce will return, as will defensive star Chris Jones, while head coach Andy Reid is also coming back to roam the sidelines for another season.

“They’ve got the big pieces back to work around,” NBC’s “Sunday Night Football” play-by-play announcer Mike Tirico said on "TODAY" on Monday.

“This is a team that has a chance to win four Super Bowls in six years. We haven’t seen that Pittsburgh of the ‘70s,” he added, referring to the Steelers dynasty that won four titles between 1975 and 1980.

Tirico also said this opening game matchup presents an opportunity for the Ravens to wipe away the bad taste of last season’s playoff loss.

“It’ll be a bit of a way to start the season for Baltimore, kind of clean last year’s slate a little bit,” he said.

Another NFL game has previously been announced, as the league’s first game in Brazil will take place Friday, Sept. 6, when the Green Bay Packers and Philadelphia Eagles battle in Sao Paulo, marking the first time an NFL game will be played on a Friday in the opening week in more than half a century.

Indeed, Friday NFL games are a rarity, although last year the Miami Dolphins and New York Jets did play on the Friday after Thanksgiving.