New England Patriots: 2017 NFL Schedule Breakdown

The New England Patriots 2017 Schedule has officially been released.  Can they take advantage of it on their quest to repeating as Super Bowl Champions?

At long last, the New England Patriots 2017 NFL schedule has been released. We’ve known the opponents since the end of the regular season, but that doesn’t compare to knowing the dates for each of your favorite team’s games.

So, without further ado, let’s break down the New England Patriots 2017 schedule.

Weeks 1-4

Week 1: vs. Kansas City Chiefs (TNF)
Week 2: at New Orleans Saints
Week 3: vs. Houston Texans
Week 4: vs. Carolina Panthers

The Patriots have a very interesting start to their season. They’ll open the year on Thursday Night Football, against the Kansas City Chiefs. This is common, as the reigning Super Bowls champions often get the honor of opening the new season.

Following their date with the Chiefs, the Patriots will head south to New Orleans, Louisiana to face the New Orleans Saints. This matchup will also be the official homecoming of newly acquired Patriots wide receiver Brandin Cooks. The Patriots and Saints kick off at 1:00 p.m. ET.

After meeting with Drew Brees, the Patriots will head back home to Foxborough for a Divisional Round rematch with the Houston Texans. However, this game will likely serve as a tune-up as the Patriots gear up for a challenge the next week.

In Week 4, New England will welcome Cam Newton and company to Gillette Stadium, in what could prove to be a very close game. The Carolina Panthers are only two years removed from a Super Bowl run of their own, and should give the Patriots a good test to kick off the month of October.

As a side note, the Week 4 matchup against the Panthers will be the first game of the NFL’s Breast Cancer Awareness month campaign.

Feb 5, 2017; Houston, TX, USA; Atlanta Falcons offensive guard Chris Chester (65) blocks for quarterback Matt Ryan (2) against the New England Patriots during Super Bowl LI at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Weeks 5-8

Week 5: at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Week 6: at New York Jets
Week 7: vs. Atlanta Falcons
Week 8: vs. Los Angeles Chargers

The New England Patriots kick off the second quarter of the season with another trip down south to Raymond James Stadium. Week 5 will also be their second Thursday Night Football appearance of the season, their first against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers though, obviously.

The Pats then make a short trip to New Jersey to face their AFC East Rivals, the New York Jets. Another 1:00 p.m. ET kickoff for the Patriots gives them a little extra time to prepare for their next game, which should be a challenge.

Week 7 features the highly anticipated Super Bowl LI rematch. Of course, the NFL has slated this game to be on Sunday Night Football. Luckily for New England, this game will take place on their home turf, which should give them a slight advantage. Pats fans can only hope that Tom Brady won’t have to make such a miraculous comeback again.

To round out the first half of the season, the New England Patriots will host the newly relocated Los Angeles Chargers. The Chargers have playmakers on both sides of the ball, including promising edge rusher Joey Bosa. Still though, the Patriots are the superior team by a large margin.

Jan 1, 2017; Denver, CO, USA; Oakland Raiders defensive end Khalil Mack (52) leaves the field following the loss to the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field. The Broncos defeated the Raiders 24-6. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Weeks 9-13

Week 9: BYE
Week 10: at Denver Broncos
Week 11: at Oakland Raiders
Week 12: vs. Miami Dolphins
Week 13: at Buffalo Bills

At first glance, this certainly seems to be the Patriots toughest quarter slate. New England gets their bye week at the exact halfway point of the season. That’s always a nice way to split the season up. They’ll need the extra rest too.

Following their week off, the Patriots will head west for back to back west coast games against the Denver Broncos and Oakland Raiders. Each of these teams could provide serious competition to New England’s AFC dominance.

The Broncos will roll out a second-year signal caller, as well as a championship caliber defense. The Raiders boast several young playmakers, most notably Derek Carr and reigning Defensive Player of the Year, Khalil Mack. The Broncos game will be the Patriots second appearance on Sunday Night Football while the Raiders game will be played in Mexico City and feature a 4:25 p.m. ET kickoff.

Following their west coast roadtrip, the Patriots host an AFC Rival, the Miami Dolphins. This matchup kicks off a six-week stretch of games featuring five games within the AFC East. Immediately after facing the Dolphins, the Patriots take a short road trip to New York for the first of their two games against the Buffalo Bills.

Jan 22, 2017; Foxborough, MA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown (84) runs with the ball as New England Patriots cornerback Logan Ryan (26) chases in the 2017 AFC Championship Game at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Weeks 14-17

Week 14: at Miami Dolphins
Week 15: at Pittsburgh Steelers
Week 16: vs. Buffalo Bills
Week 17: vs. New York Jets

After playing two straight AFC East games in Weeks 12 and 13, the Patriots will play yet another in Week 14. They travel to Miami for their second game in three weeks against the Dolphins, although this time on Monday Night Football.

Up next, New England heads to Pittsburgh for another 2017 Playoffs rematch, this time of the AFC Championship Game. Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Brown, Le’Veon Bell and the Steelers offense will be chomping at the bit for another shot at taking down the World Champs.

Then, to close out the season, the Patriots play their final two AFC East games, both at Gillette Stadium. Next up on Christmas Eve, the Patriots square off against the Buffalo Bills. Then in Week 17, New England has their rematch with the New York Jets.

Due to the fact that the Patriots will likely have clinched the playoffs at some point during this block of games, expect to see their superstars sparingly. At any rate, this is a good slate of games to get geared up for the postseason.

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