When does the NFL season start in 2022? Complete Week 1 schedule, matchups for all 32 teams


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The 2022 NFL season is creeping ever closer — slowly, yes, but surely.

Players, coaches, executives and fans doubtless will be thankful for the return to play after one of the wildest offseasons in recent memory.

It includes Deshaun Watson’s trade from Houston to Cleveland, his ongoing scandal and ensuing league investigation of a possible suspension. There’s also the overhaul of the wide receiver market with the likes of Cooper Kupp, Davante Adams, Tyreek Hill and DK Metcalf.

While those storylines and more have kept fans’ attention, none of that will compare to the actual games and the debates they will generate. The best part: The NFL will be operating under normal procedures for the first time since the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic.

With that, The Sporting News has everything you need to know to watch Week 1 of the 2022 NL season, from the Thursday night opener to “Sunday Night Football: to “Monday Night Football:”

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When does the NFL season start in 2022?

Date: Thursday, Sept. 8
Game: Bills at Rams
Kickoff time: 8:20 p.m. ET

This year, the opening game of the season will be the Bills at the Rams at SoFi Stadium. It’s a fascinating matchup between a rising AFC power and an NFC squad whose win-now methods produced a Super Bowl victory last season.

There’s also the quarterback battle between Josh Allen, one of the game’s best young signal-callers, and Matthew Stafford, who finally broke through for his first ring with Los Angeles.

MORE: Training camp dates, schedules, locations for all 32 teams

NFL schedule Week 1

The 2022 NFL schedule will once again start with a Thursday night game involving the defending Super Bowl champion and end with “Monday Night Football” — though, once again, there is no doubleheader on the final game night of the week.

Apart from the season opener, other must-watch games include the potential Baker Mayfield revenge game when the Browns travel to Charlotte to take on the Panthers; a battle of young quarterbacks in the 49ers’ Trey Lance vs. the Bears’ Justin Fields; Russell Wilson’s return to Seattle on “MNF” as a Bronco; and the debut of first-year head coaches.

Below is the complete Week 1 schedule for the 2022 NFL season.

Thursday, Sept. 8

Time (ET)
Game
TV channel
8:20 p.m.
Bills at Rams
NBC, fuboTV

Sunday, Sept. 11

Time (ET)
Game
TV channel
1 p.m.
Saints at Falcons
Fox, fuboTV
1 p.m.
Browns at Panthers
CBS, fuboTV
1 p.m.
49ers at Bears
Fox, fuboTV
1 p.m.
Steelers at Bengals
CBS, fuboTV
1 p.m.
Eagles at Lions
Fox, fuboTV
1 p.m.
Colts at Texans
CBS, fuboTV
1 p.m.
Patriots at Dolphins
CBS, fuboTV
1 p.m.
Ravens at Jets
CBS, fuboTV
1 p.m.
Jaguars at Commanders
Fox, fuboTV
4:25 p.m.
Giants at Titans
Fox, fuboTV
4:25 p.m.
Chiefs at Cardinals
CBS, fuboTV
4:25 p.m.
Raiders at Chargers
CBS, fuboTV
4:25 p.m.
Packers at Vikings
Fox, fuboTV
8:20 p.m.
Buccaneers at Cowboys
NBC, Universo, fuboTV

Monday, Sept. 12

Time (ET)
Game
TV channel
8:15 p.m.
Broncos at Seahawks
ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, fuboTV

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COVID-19 and the start of the NFL season

The NFL will follow standard operating procedures for the first time in two years in 2022 after suspending nearly all of its COVID-19 joint protocols with the NFL Players Association.

From an NFL memo sent to teams in March:

Based on current encouraging trends regarding the prevalence and severity of COVID-19, the evolving guidance from the CDC, changes to state law and the counsel of our respective experts, the NFL and NFLPA have agreed to suspend all aspects of the joint COVID-19 Protocols,” the memo read. “We will continue to prioritize the health and safety of players, coaches and staff, as we have throughout the pandemic.

That includes the discontinuation of such policies as mandatory surveillance testing of players and staff; tracking devices; wearing masks or other face coverings; and capacity limits (all subject, of course, to state and local requirements).

That said, the memo does require any player or staff member who tests positive for COVID-19 to isolate for five days and produce a negative test result to return to club facilities.

Below is the full memo, via Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network:


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