Trevor Lawrence, the Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback, is excited by the prospect of playing back-to-back games in London. Photograph: Matt Stamey/AP The division. The Bills have owned the AFC East for the last three seasons, but big-name acquisitions this offseason should make this one of the most competitive divisions in the league. The Week 1 game against the Aaron Rodgers-led Jets and the Week 4 game against the Dolphins, who should have a healthy Tua Tagovailoa and new cornerback Jalen Ramsey, could give us some early insight into whether the Bills are in real danger of being toppled. The team from the Bay Area traded pick Nos 102, 164, and 222 to move up to No 87 and draft a safety, Ji’Ayir Brown. Brown has good instincts, but his lack of speed could bring issues in the NFL. Then, with the 99th pick, they went for a … kicker, Jake Moody.
The schedule then moves to Germany, which hosted their first regular season game last year in Munich. There will be two games, both at Frankfurt Stadium. The Super Bowl champions, Kansas City, face the Miami Dolphins on 5 November and the New England Patriots take on the Indianapolis Colts seven days later. Tyreek Hill was robbed of his scene. Hill vowed to be the “worst enemy” of Chiefs Kingdom in Miami’s game against Kansas City, but he won’t be able to do it at Arrowhead Stadium, where he once threw up the peace sign as a Chief. Miami and Kansas City will play in Germany instead, and even geography has gotten drawn into the sniping. The Dolphins’ newest blockbuster acquisition, cornerback Jalen Ramsey, tweeted that he wanted to play at Arrowhead for Hill, while the Chiefs’ Chris Jones tweeted that the NFL saved the Dolphins by not making Hill return to Arrowhead. That prompted Hill to opine that he hoped this didn’t ruin their friendship. The neutral site does give the Dolphins a significant break, as does the fact that they have just seven true road games this season. About 1,100 people work for the N.F.L. at its offices in New York, New Jersey and California. According to a league spokesman, 37 percent are women and 30 percent are people of color. The league has put more effort into diversifying its hiring and has mandatory antiracism training and an anonymous hotline — called Protect the Shield — for employees’ concerns. Back home, the AFC South looms as less of a punching bag, with C.J. Stroud in Houston and Anthony Richardson in Indy, but Jacksonville’s fate boils down to Lawrence picking up where he left off.
With 15 touchdowns to just two picks over his final nine regular-season games last season, we’re staring at something special in the works. While the defending NFC champs should be just fine this season, they have the most difficult strength of schedule — which they already knew, as their opponents had a collective .566 winning percentage in 2022 — and they’ll run into a supercharged Gillette Stadium when Tom Brady is honored in Week 1. Tough opening quirk. The National Football League (NFL) is a professional American football league that consists of 32 teams divided equally between two conferences, the National Football Conference (NFC) and the American Football Conference (AFC). Founded in 1920, the NFL is the highest level of professional American football in the world and has become a cultural institution in the United States. “Our policies are intended not only to comply with all applicable laws but to foster a workplace free from harassment, intimidation and discrimination,” the statement said. Young, the first overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, completed his first NFL practice at Panthers rookie minicamp on Friday and “looked the part in every way,” according to Panthers head coach Frank Reich. There’s optimism in Miami, too. But there are also understandable question marks with quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, and the Dolphins open on the road against the Chargers and Patriots. That’s a tricky start for an unproven team. Another tough nugget: The Dolphins don’t host an AFC East team until the Patriots on Oct. 29, so they don’t have the huge home-field advantage of a divisional game in that intense South Florida heat. The Thanksgiving tripleheader features three division games.
It begins with Jordan Love and the Green Bay Packers visiting the Lions. The Dallas Cowboys then host the Washington Commanders and the Seattle Seahawks host the 49ers in prime time. Tagovailoa’s 2022 campaign produced the second-highest passer rating (105.5) in Dolphins history, behind only Dan Marino’s season-long romp in ’84 (108.9). That came after the team explored Tom Brady and Deshaun Watson as potential replacements — and before Tua talked openly about pondering retirement in the wake of multiple head injuries. The Browns are acquiring Za’Darius Smith via trade with the Vikings, NFL Network Insiders Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero reported on Friday. It’s been about four months since every team in the NFL became aware of its 17-opponent slate for the 2023 season, but the finality of each order was disclosed Thursday. It’s a new world for the Jets and their quarterback, who will contend against a suddenly thorny AFC East, duel the AFC West and take on Dallas, Philly and the NFC East. It lines up as the NFL’s sixth-nastiest slate by strength of schedule. Winning MVP, though, will require felling Mahomes — arguably twice — and turning the Chargers into a consistent heartthrob after years of dark comedy. Is this a sneaky Super Bowl squad ready to rise — or just another cursed Bolts team destined to disappoint? Burrow will get another shot at Mahomes on New Year’s Eve, after tussling with Josh Allen, Trevor Lawrence and San Francisco’s Nick Bosa-led defense. One additional to-do: It’s time for Joe Cool to improve on his weirdish 1-4 record against the Cleveland Browns. It’s a big transition coming from a different team, but now L.A. feels like home, Jackson said.
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