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2024 NFL schedule release takeaways: Biggest SNF matchups; Jets, Chiefs and Cowboys get 6 prime-time games

The full NFL schedule was announced Wednesday as fans plan their lives around 18 weeks of games, culminating with the Super Bowl in New Orleans on Feb. 9.
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Titanic clashes between pro football's biggest names highlight prime offerings set for this season's "Sunday Night Football" on NBC, officials said Wednesday.

While the opponents each NFL team will face have been known since the end of the regular season, dates and times for almost all of those contests were not announced until Wednesday night.

NBC's Sunday prime-time lineup kicks off Sept. 8, when the Los Angeles Rams' Matthew Stafford and the Detroit Lions' Jared Goff square off in a matchup of quarterbacks who were traded for each other in a 2021 deal that has benefited both sides.

The following Sunday night, Sept. 15, features the Chicago Bears' No. 1 draft pick, Caleb Williams, taking on the Houston Texas and last season's rookie of the year, quarterback C.J. Stroud.

New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who missed nearly all of 2023 with a Week 1 injury, is set to make his first "Sunday Night Football" appearance in Jets green when his team visits the Pittsburgh Steelers on Oct. 20.

Gang Green will make another "SNF" showing Nov. 17 against the Indianapolis Colts.

Other key takeaways

  • The Jets, coming off yet another losing campaign at 7-10, somehow ended up tied for the most prime-time dates. They'll be on prime time in front of a national audience six times, tied with the Dallas Cowboys and the San Francisco 49ers.
  • The Chiefs, Lions, Rams, Buffalo Bills, Green Bay Packers, Cincinnati Bengals, Baltimore Ravens, Philadelphia Eagles and Miami Dolphins all have five prime-time games.
  • The Carolina Panthers, coming off a miserable 2-15 season, were completely shut out of prime time.
  • In terms of pure star power, the biggest marquee game might be the regular season's very first. That'll have the world champion Kansas City Chiefs and the Baltimore Ravens on Sept. 5 in a Thursday night date televised by NBC. Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes has led his squad to three Super Bowl titles, while Ravens signal-caller Lamar Jackson has two MVP awards on his mantle.
  • The NFL's first game in Brazil happens a day later, when the Philadelphia Eagles meet the Green Bay Packers in São Paulo.
  • The Jets will play "Monday Night Football" on opening weekend against the NFC champion 49ers. Rodgers suffered a season-ending ACL injury in the Jets' 2023 opener, also on "MNF." He was sacked by Buffalo Bills’ Leonard Floyd, who coincidentally has left Buffalo to join San Francisco.

Best schedule releases

Every year teams get more and more creative with releasing full schedules. Here are some of the best announcements: