A look ahead at the Patriots’ 2020 regular season opponents
Because all of the AFC divisions have now been claimed, the New England Patriots know their exact opponents for the 2020 regular season now.
It’s never too early to start thinking about the new year.
New Year’s Day 2020 is less than one week away now, and the final games of the 2019 NFL regular season are set to be played in just three days. Soon Wild Card Weekend will be underway, then the Divisional round, the conference championships, the Pro Bowl (yawn), and finally Super Bowl 54 down in Miami.
Blink and you’ll miss it.
With any luck, the New England Patriots will be playing deep into January and then hopefully into early February as well. The team showed moxie in defeating the Buffalo Bills last Saturday during Week 16’s NFL action… and in the process, the Pats claimed their 11th consecutive division championship.
It also cemented New England as the fourth and final division champion in the AFC this year. Because of that, the Patriots now know all 16 teams they’ll face in the 2020 regular season; the exact order of their schedule won’t be revealed until next spring, though.
As usual, the Patriots will face their AFC East division mates twice each – once on the road and once at home in Foxborough. Those three teams are the Miami Dolphins, New York Jets, and Buffalo Bills, and together, they make up six of the Patriots’ 16 games next year.
New England will also face this year’s division winners in the AFC – all three of whom represent the Patriots’ only three losses this season, by the way. Those teams are the Houston Texans, Kansas City Chiefs, and Baltimore Ravens.
According to the team’s official website, the Patriots will travel to face the Texans and the Chiefs on the road, but will be home for the game against the Ravens. This current season saw New England go on the road for the Texans and Ravens games but host the Chiefs at Gillette Stadium.
The remaining seven games on the Patriots’ 2020 schedule are split between AFC West and NFC West foes, whom the Patriots see on a rotating basis once every four years.
In the AFC West, New England will host the Denver Broncos and the soon-to-be Las Vegas Raiders, and travel to face the Los Angeles Chargers in their brand new stadium in Inglewood. As previously mentioned, they’ll also travel to Arrowhead to take on the Chiefs.
In the NFC West, New England will again travel to Los Angeles to take on the Rams, their opponent from Super Bowl 53, in the new Inglewood stadium. They’ll also travel to face the Seattle Seahawks, and will host the San Francisco 49ers and the Arizona Cardinals in New England.
Based off 2019 records, the Patriots figure to have one of the more difficult schedules in the NFL next season. Not only do they face the other AFC division winners, but they also have to take on the NFC West… which has arguably been the toughest division in the NFL this year. Add in two games against the surging Buffalo Bills, and New England certainly won’t have a cakewalk in 2020.