New England Patriots

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - JANUARY 08: A detail of the official National Football League NFL logo is seen painted on the turf as the New York Giants host the Atlanta Falcons during their NFC Wild Card Playoff game at MetLife Stadium on January 8, 2012 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)

By Ty Anderson,

Almost everything about the 2020 NFL season remains up in the air as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. But that won’t stop the league from proceeding with a preseason and regular-season schedule release later this week, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

We’ll welcome the release given how starved we all are for real sports happenings to talk about, but it’s worth mentioning that nothing about this schedule will shock you, as it’s already known who and where every team will be playing next year.

The Patriots, for example, already know that they’ll be playing both the AFC and NFC West divisions in 2020, and that the road games among that eight-game East vs. West slate will include trips to Kansas City, Seattle, and Los Angeles (twice). New England will also play the South-winning Houston on the road, and welcome Lamar Jackson and the North-best Ravens to Foxboro in 2020.

But this release will highlight the primetime games that await the Patriots in 2020 after having five primetime games last season, which will be interesting to see now that Tom Brady is out of the picture and the Patriots as a team are shifting towards an obvious youth movement.

Brady or not, it’s worth wondering if the league will have the Patriots make the trip out to K.C. for the Chiefs’ banner-raising season opener (Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs came to Gillette when the Patriots raised theirs in 2017) or if they have ‘greater’ plans for that for their kickoff game, and if New England-Baltimore draws its typical primetime slot.

One change to this schedule, according to Schefter, is the expected elimination of an international game, which makes all the sense in the world given the complete uncertainty regarding traveling, spectators, and everything in between.

Bill Belichick’s Patriots, who have captured 11 straight AFC East titles, are coming off a 12-4 season that ended with a wild card round loss to Mike Vrabel’s Tennessee Titans.

Ty Anderson is a writer and columnist for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Yell at him on Twitter: @_TyAnderson.