Taking a look at the Falcons’ opponents before the schedule release

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The NFL recently revealed they will announce the official schedule on Thursday, May 7th, and there is already a rumor that the Falcons could open up on Monday night against Tom Brady and the new-look Buccaneers. With that in mind, let’s take a peek at the rest of Atlanta’s 2020 opponents before we find out when they will play them:

Division Rivals

Outside of the Saints, the other two opponents in the NFC South will have a very different feel to them. Arguably the best quarterback to ever play the position took his talents to Florida, and he brought a friend with him. Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski join Mike Evans and Chris Godwin, creating the most dangerous offense in the NFL on paper. However, their defense will have to step up if they want to reach their full potential. 

The Panthers have an entirely new coaching staff, led by former Baylor coach Matt Rhule. However, their most intriguing addition is their new offensive coordinator — Joe Brady — who helped instrument the best offense in the history of college football last year at LSU. They also have a new quarterback in Teddy Bridgewater, who started for the first half of last season in New Orleans, leading the Saints to a 7-1 record. With him under center, and toys like Christian McCaffery, D.J. Moore, and Robby Anderson, Joe Brady has a lot more firepower to work with than people are giving them credit for. 

And then, of course, you have the Saints. Drew Brees never seems to die, and they are going to be an extraordinary tough matchup as long as he’s around. The Falcons better buckle up because going .500 in this division may be the best they can hope for. 

NFC Foes

Atlanta is tasked with playing the NFC North this year, which looks like it will be one of the tougher divisions in the league. At home, they will face the Bears and Lions, and on the road, they have to travel to Green Bay and Minnesota. In a perfect world, you’d like that to be switched, considering the Packers and Vikings are the favorites in their division and also have some of the best home fields in the sport. Either way, none of these games will be pushovers. Chicago still has an elite defense, and Nick Foles might be able to take them to new heights. People also forget the Lions were looking much improved before Matt Stafford went down for the season. 

Outside of the NFC North, the Falcons aren’t catching any breaks. They get Seattle at home and then have to play Dallas on the road. Both of those teams have Super Bowl aspirations in 2020, and the Seahawks are my early pick to make it out of the NFC. 

AFC Foes

Unfortunately, the AFC doesn’t look much better. The Falcons will be playing the AFC West, which many analysts are already pegging as the best division in football, led by the Kansas City Chiefs — last year’s Super Bowl champions — who Atlanta will be playing on the road — count that one as a loss (unless, of course, the Falcons are 5-9 and playing a meaningless game. Then, they will win by 20). Atlanta will also travel to Los Angeles to play the Chargers. The only promising thing about that is the Chargers have no fans so that might be a home game on the road. However, Los Angeles is poised to be a much better team in 2020. 

At home, Atlanta will play the Raiders and Broncos. Just yesterday, the NFL officially canceled their international series, which is fantastic news for the Falcons because they were scheduled to play Denver in London, and it was going to count as a home game. Now, that contest will take place in Atlanta, which could be the difference between a win and a loss. 


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