The NFL will release its full schedule for the 2022 season Thursday night, at which point the New England Patriots, among others, will learn when they’re playing each opponent.
But the identifies of those opponents already are known. So, we might as well serve up a reminder before the league unveils its weekly slate for the upcoming campaign.
Here’s who the Patriots will play this season:
New York Jets
New York Jets
Las Vegas Raiders
Green Bay Packers
The Patriots, as always, will face each of their division rivals — the Bills, Dolphins and Jets — twice, with one home matchup and one road matchup apiece.
Eight of the remaining 11 opponents then are comprised of two entire divisions, per the NFL’s rotation formula, and New England this season will face the AFC North and NFC North.
The other three opponents are determined in part by the final NFL standings for the 2021 season. The Patriots finished in second place in the AFC East, meaning they’ll face the second-place team in the AFC South (Colts) and the second-place team in the AFC West (Raiders). They’ll then play the Cardinals, who finished second in the NFC West, based on Arizona’s place in the 2021 standings plus the schedule rotation for a TBD NFC opponent each season.
That we know each of New England’s 2022 opponents — along with whether the Patriots are playing them at Gillette Stadium or away from Foxboro — obviously takes away some of the suspense associated with the annual NFL schedule release. But there’s still a minor surprise element involved, particularly for those waiting to explore potential travel arrangements.
Patriots fans typically travel well, and there are several games on this season’s schedule that could appeal to New England supporters, whether it’s based on the actual matchup or the destination city.