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National Football League to release 2017 regular season schedules on Thursday

21 April 2017

Wembley will stage the Jacksonville Jaguars and Baltimore Ravens clash on September 24, before the Miami Dolphins and New Orleans Saints battle at the venue on October 1.

The Dolphins are an ascending team, having won nine of their final 11 games last season. Until the Texans prove they can compete against the NFL's top teams on a regular basis, this might again become a rather one-sided affair. Brady and the Pats travel to Tampa Bay to take on the Buccaneers and rising star QB Jameis Winston in an unpredictable Thursday night contest that could be a "trap" for New England ...

Assuming all of these teams return to the field near to their 2016 forms, these rematches should make for some great games in 2017.

When it went to a full season of Thursday night games in 2012, the National Football League indicated it would ensure every team played at least once on Thursday for fairness. The Patriots' other home games are against division rivals Miami, Buffalo and the New York Jets, and Kansas City, San Diego, Carolina and Houston. The expectation is that the Falcons will get the first Sunday Night Football game of the year to show off the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

The biggest game on the schedule will take place in prime time - and rightfully so.

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The Atlanta Falcons, beaten by New England in the Super Bowl in February, will have to wait until Week 7 for a shot at revenge when they visit the Patriots on October 22. The bye came in Week 5 past year. With an extra week of rest, will the team do the same in 2017?

The Patriots will play back-to-back games on the road two times and then have a stretch of three straight road games. The Patriots hosted the Jets last Christmas Eve. Week 12 - vs Dolphins - Sun. They did commit to pay their upgraded offensive line $57 million in cash this season, an NFL high and more than twice the league average, and they have the draft capital to add a premier defensive player and a franchise quarterback next week if they choose to. Will he have some wins too?

Week 6 (Oct. 15) Steelers, 3:25 p.m. It will be interesting to see how they're received.

Teams shouldn't worry so much when their bye weeks is.

We saw some thrilling games in the postseason, and we'll have plenty of rematches this year.

National Football League to release 2017 regular season schedules on Thursday