NFL clubs today approved a schedule that, beginning in 2021, feature 17 regular-season games and three preseason games. The new schedule was approved at a virtual league meeting.
The NFL-NFLPA Collective Bargaining Agreement signed in March of 2020 enabled the league and the union to move to 17 games, providing fans with an extra week of regular-season NFL action. That decision follows the March 18 announcement of long-term media distribution agreements providing fans greater access to NFL games than ever before.
“One of the tremendous benefits of each team playing 17 regular-season games is the ability for us to bring more games to more fans,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. “The CBA with the players and the recently completed media agreements provide the foundation for us to continue to grow our game around the world.”
The 17th game will feature teams from opposing conferences that finished in the same place within their respective divisions at the end of the previous season.
Under the scheduling formula below, every team plays 17 games with one bye week, hosting 10 total games – either nine regular-season games and one preseason game or eight regular-season games and two preseason games. The league will alternate the conference that will play the additional regular-season home game each season. The AFC was determined to be the home conference for the 17th game in 2021.
The 2021 schedule will feature:
The official 2021 schedule with dates and times will be announced later this spring on NFL Network and NFL.com. Season ticket availability and premium seating options can be found on club websites and single-game tickets will also be available after the schedule is released.
NFL Kickoff Weekend will begin Thursday night, September 9 and the regular season will end Sunday, January 9, 2022. The 2021 season concludes with Super Bowl LVI in Los Angeles on Sunday, February 13, 2022.
The 2022 Pro Bowl will be played on Sunday, February 6 at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.
Also, the new schedule ensures that, beginning in 2022, all 32 clubs will play internationally at least once every eight years. The scheduling of up to four neutral site games per year in a country outside the United States will focus initially on Canada, Europe, Mexico, South America and the United Kingdom. Clubs can continue to volunteer to play home games internationally, as is currently the case.
See the updated 2021 home and away opponents for all 32 NFL clubs.