Philadelphia Eagles-New England Patriots among 2018 preseason matchups


The NFL released its preseason schedule Wednesday night and among the highlights is a Week 2 matchup between the two participants in Super Bowl LII, the Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots.

It can hardly be called a rematch, but the fact that the Eagles will play in New England just months after defeating Tom Brady and the Pats for their first Lombardi Trophy adds juice to the preseason slate.

There’s a good chance Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles will get the start as Carson Wentz continues to work back from a knee injury. Eagles coach Doug Pederson is already on record as saying he doesn’t need to see Wentz in the preseason. “I need him ready for Week 1,” he said recently.

Both the Eagles and Patriots like to hold joint practices with teams they’re facing in the preseason. It would make for some pretty good theater if the teams decide to practice together before their preseason matchup.

ESPN will broadcast two Week 2 matchups: the New York Jets‘ visit to the Washington Redskins for a Thursday night game on Aug. 16, and the Baltimore Ravens‘ Monday night visit to the Indianapolis Colts on Aug. 20.

The Ravens and Chicago Bears will kick off the preseason on Aug. 2 in the previously announced Hall of Fame Game matchup as they honor 2018 inductees Ray Lewis and Brian Urlacher, who will enter the Hall on Aug. 4.

Elsewhere on the schedule, newly signed Ravens quarterback Robert Griffin III gets a chance to face his former team in a Week 4 matchup versus Washington. Griffin signed a one-year deal with Baltimore this month after sitting out the 2017 season. Perhaps he’ll need a strong showing against his old squad to solidify a roster spot.

New Broncos quarterback Case Keenum will likely make his debut against his old team, as Denver hosts the Minnesota Vikings in Week 1. The Broncos defense, meanwhile, figures to get an extended look at their former starting quarterback, Trevor Siemian, who was traded to the Vikings last month.

Keeping with the theme of players suiting up against their old teams, wide receiver Jordy Nelson and the Raiders host the Green Bay Packers in Week 3.

When the Tampa Bay Buccaneers visit the Tennessee Titans in Week 2, quarterbacks Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota — the top two picks in the 2015 draft — will square off for the first time since Week 1 of their rookie season.

Mitchell Trubisky and Patrick Mahomes, the first two quarterbacks drafted last year, will be in the spotlight when the Bears host the Kansas City Chiefs. Matt Nagy, Chicago’s new head coach, is Kansas City’s former offensive coordinator.

The preseason will end Aug. 30-31, and the regular season will begin Sept. 6 in Philadelphia.

Regular-season schedules will be announced at a later date.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source : ESPN