The 2020 NFL schedule has been released and here are several takeaways in a week-by-week look at Saints’ upcoming season.
First and foremost, what we still do not know at this point is whether or not there will be fans in stands at the top of the season. However, for the Saints’ schedule, that does not seem to have factor in to their structure.
New Orleans will host four of their first six games. Meaning that if there are no fans to open the season, dome-field advantage may be a little different early on. There will also be a quasi-early bye week for the Saints in Week 6 as well. Which can be helpful if gathering limits maintain into October. Better than having a fifth home game during that time.
Again, some of the potentially fan-less games could be pretty important ones. The season opens with a home-stand for the first of two Brees vs. Brady showdowns in what looks to be the National spot on a Sunday afternoon game September 13th. They follow that up with a trip to Las Vegas to play some slots and a football game, I guess. The Saints will be the first visiting team to grace the Allegiant Stadium locker rooms ever as it will be the Las Vegas Raiders’ inaugural game, on Monday Night Football no less. The first of five primetime games for New Orleans (four at night and one lone game on a special holiday), the max a team is allowed ahead of the season with a potential sixth allowed via late-season flex options.
They will head back home to host the Green Bay Packers in a another big QB headliner with Brees vs. Aaron Rodgers. Have the Packers done enough with their offense to outmatch the Saints’ improved defense? And will the addition of Emanuel Sanders be enough to lift the Saints over one of the best early-season defenses in 2019? A fun matchup on for Sunday Night Football, that Saints’ second primetime game in a row. Kind of nice that this game is on a Sunday night as it helps to compensate for the short week having a MNF matchup the week before.
The Saints then travel to Detroit in Week 4 before coming back home to host the Los Angeles Chargers Week 5. Big question here is whether or not Justin Herbert will be at the helm for Los Angeles. New Orleans will alternate three home games and two away games ahead of the Week 6 bye.
After the bye week, Saints fans will enjoy some confidence in matchups hosting the now Teddy Bridgewater-led Carolina Panthers to cap off October and then traveling to take on the Chicago Bears November 1st. Get ready to hear a lot of storylines about cold weather games even though traveling to Chicago at the top of November is much more preferable than doing so nearer or into December.
Brees vs. Brady the reprise launches the Saints back into primetime a Week 9 taking on the Bucs in Raymond James Stadium in their second Sunday Night Football game.
Weeks 10 and 11 bring two home losses from 2019 back for revenge with back to back games against the San Francisco 49ers and Atlanta Falcons. At this point in the schedule, those NFC matchups will be very important for playoff seeding, especially with only one team getting the first-round playoff bye. No roasted falcon on Thanksgiving day, unless you save the leftovers from Sunday, November 22nd.
After the first Falcons game, the Saints go on their toughest stretch of the season, at least from today’s point of view. A three-game road trip Weeks 12-14 as they visit the Broncos, Falcons, and Eagles respectively before coming back to the Dome to host the Kansas City Chiefs December 20th and then playing again only five days later on Christmas Day as they host the 2019 NFC Wildcard rematch with the Minnesota Vikings.
The Christmas game is the NFL’s first Friday game since 2009 and will hold the place of both the Saints and Vikings’ Thursday night matchup.
Sean Payton, Drew Brees, and the hang will need to be on point during that stretch as they could sew up the NFC South at the very least, but will also be playing for NFC seeding.
Finally, the Saints will get a long week before closing up shop against the Carolina Panthers, something that feels like a bit of tradition of late. Pretty cool to open. up the year with Brees vs. Brady and then potentially close the season with Hill/Winston vs. Bridgewater.
So many intriguing storylines in the Saints 2020 schedule with big matchups, GOAT showdowns, backup battles bridging the past, present, and future, and another rough stretch of games at a pivotal point in the season.
How will Drew Brees and the krewe hold up against their toughest competition like Kansas City, Green Bay, and san Francisco? Will they be able to seal up winnable games like those against Detroit and Chicago? Can New Orleans pull off big wins in a tough stretch like they did without Drew Brees in 2019? Lots to look forward.
What are your thoughts on the Saints’ 2020 schedule? How many games will they win? Let us know in the comments. Make sure you follow Canal Street Chronicles on Twitter at @SaintsCSC, “Like” us on Facebook at Canal Street Chronicles, and make sure you’re subscribed to our new YouTube channel. As always, you can follow me on Twitter @RossJacksonNOLA.