The 2023 NFL schedule has been revealed with primetime schedules across three networks, tripleheaders for the holidays and special games throughout the year. This season will also be the first to feature flex scheduling for Monday Night Football, where games between poorly performing teams can be substituted for more exciting ones. This will begin in Week 12.
The regular season will kick off on Thursday Sept. 7th with the defending Super Bowl champs, the Kansas City Chiefs, welcoming the scrappy Detroit Lions to Arrowhead Field. As has been the case for the last several years, this game will be broadcast on NBC in the United States. Other highlights from Week 1 in the NFL include the first matchup of the Jordan Love era in Green Bay, as his Packers travel to Soldier Field for the 207th edition of the midwestern rivalry, an NFC East battle between the New York Giants and Dallas Cowboys, and the Jets debut of Aaron Rodgers against the Buffalo Bills on Monday night.
Thursday Night Football
In Amazon Prime Video’s second year, they have been given a fairly balanced schedule with a decent interspersal of divisional rivalries and top tier brawls amongst games that are just… fine. The TNF slate will officially begin with the 2022 runnerup, Philadelphia Eagles, welcoming the Minnesota Vikings in Week 2. To launch Week 4, on September 28th, we get our first divisional game with the Detroit Lions travelling to Lambeau Field for what should be a lot more competitive a matchup than in years past. In Weeks 11 and 12, the Baltimore Ravens and Cincinnati Bengals, Miami Dolphins and New York Jets will renew their division rivalries, followed by the Los Angeles Chargers and Las Vegas Raiders in Week 15.
Four teams will not feature on Thursday night – the Atlanta Falcons, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts and Arizona Cardinals – while four teams – the Chicago Bears, New Orleans Saints, New York Jets and Pittsburgh Steelers – will feature twice.
Sunday Night Football
In addition to the traditional kickoff game in Week 1, the NBC staple will also play host to a divisional contest between the Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants on Sunday night. They will also host, during Week 4, the first meeting of the Kansas City Chiefs and New York Jets since Aaron Rodgers made his way to the big apple and the playoff rematch (and probably preview) between the Buffalo Bills and Cincinnati Bengals on Bonfire Night (Week 9, November 5th).
Although the games will be eligible for flex, the Sunday Night Football schedule is currently expected to conclude with back to back games within the AFC and NFC North, respectively, when the Bengals and Steelers vie on December 23rd, as part of the Christmas Weekend offering, and the Packers and Vikings square off on New Year’s Eve.
Monday Night Football
There will be no doubleheader to launch the Monday Night Football schedule this year with ESPN presenting a single game on September 11th, Buffalo Bills at New York Jets. This game will serve as the baptism by fire of former Green Bay Packers quarterback, Aaron Rodgers, as he heads into a division rival, in primetime, at home and in front of the eyes of the New York media.
There will be two doubleheaders in 2023, though, with games taking place simultaneously on ESPN and ABC. In Week 2, New Orleans Saints @ Carolina Panthers will be on ESPN from 7:15pm ET with Cleveland Browns @ Pittsburgh Steelers following an hour later on ABC. Likewise, in Week 3, Philadelphia Eagles @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers will kick off the evening on ABC, with Los Angeles Rams @ Cincinnati Bengals beginning at 8:15pm ET on ESPN.
Perhaps the most intriguing game on the schedule is the rematch of last season’s Super Bowl. Will it be the same result when the Kansas City Chiefs welcome the Philadelphia Eagles to Arrowhead? We will find out November 20th on NBC.
As mentioned earlier, starting in Week 12, ESPN have the option to flex games to Monday night and I would expect to see this happen at least a couple of times. Should the seasons of the Dallas Cowboys and Detroit Lions take a negative turn, we may not see them in the final Sunday slot of the season on November 30th.
NFL Network Exclusives
In addition of the games taking place internationally in 2023, the NFL Network will also broadcast a game on Christmas Eve. At 8:15pm ET (1:15am GMT), the New England Patriots will ride their sleigh into the mountains of Colorado to take on the Denver Broncos.
Prior to this, in Week 15, the Network will also host their own tripleheader. Details of the teams and times is yet to be revealed but it is expected to take place across the Saturday night, as they did in 2022.
Thanksgiving and Black Friday
Once more, the 2023 NFL regular season schedule offers two delicious tripleheaders during the holiday season. As per the tradition, the Thanksgiving games will be hosted by the Detroit Lions and Dallas Cowboys and the schedule organisers handed fans two memorable divisional matchups to enjoy on November 23rd. In the lunchtime game, 12:30pm ET / 5:30pm GMT on FOX / Sky Sports, the Green Bay Packers will travel to Ford Field. In the second game, the Washington Commanders will head to Jerryworld once more. Who will the Commanders quarterback be by then? Who will the Commanders owner be by then? We would be thankful for some answers. The Seattle Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers will square off in a playoff rematch to close out Turkey Day.
But wait, there’s more! For the first time ever, the NFL will present another Thanksgiving game on Black Friday. This, frankly, has been a long time coming. On November 24th, Amazon Prime will air the first ever game, a historic AFC East matchup between the New York Jets and Miami Dolphins. Kickoff is scheduled for 3 pm ET / 8pm GMT. The game is expected to air on Sky Sports in the UK.
Much to the chagrin of wives everywhere (mine especially), the NFL will once again present a tripleheader of games on Christmas Day. Santa Claus will also deliver us our first Nickelodeon game of the year because what is Christmas without a little slime? This game will also be broadcast CBS in the US and will see the Las Vegas Raiders take on the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead. Perhaps we’ll get a little festive snow in Missouri.
In the next slot, on FOX, we’ll see the New York Giants travel to face their division rivals, the Philadelphia Eagles, for a 4:30pm ET/9:30pm GMT kickoff. The night’s action will conclude with another Super Bowl classic, when Lamar Jackson’s Baltimore Ravens head west to the Golden State to take on the San Francisco 49ers in Santa Clara. This game will be a 8:30pm ET/1:30pm GMT start on ABC.
Which of the special NFL games are you most looking forward to? What week 15 games would you like to see in the NFL Network tripleheader? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!