Are you ready for some football? Top 21 NFL 2021 football games
HOUSTON — Question: What do gas shortages, the war in the Middle East, and other domestic and foreign policy problems all have in common? Answer: None of them have anything to do with football. For true leatherheads, everything else in life can be put on the back burner. The NFL 2021 schedule is now a reality. Kickoff is only four months away. The Super Bowl is only nine months away.
Professional football does not require hyperbole. Perfection never does. As leatherheads sit down and prepare our schedule for the rest of the 2021 calendar year, it is time to plan business meetings and vacations around the most important games.
2021 NFL Football Schedule
Without further ado, here are the top 21 football games of upcoming 2021 NFL season.
1) Week 1: Pittsburgh Steelers at Buffalo Bills —
This 2021 NFL season could be Big Ben Roethlisberger’s last hurrah. The Steelers began 11-0 last year before their epic collapse. The Bills made it to the AFC Title Game. Both NFL teams are legitimate Super Bowl contenders.
2) Week 2: Kansas City Chiefs at Baltimore Ravens —
Patrick Mahomes has been to two Super Bowls, winning one. Lamar Jackson finally won his first playoff game last year. These are the two most exciting quarterbacks in the game.
3) Week 3: Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers —
Forget the offseason drama. The 49ers walloped the Packers twice in 2019, including the NFC Title Game. Aaron Rodgers is the reigning NFL MVP. Jimmy Garoppolo was in the Super Bowl two years ago. Jordan Love and Trey Lance are waiting in the wings. The 49ers have a nasty defense.
4) Week 4: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New England Patriots —
Last year Tom Brady got the better of Bill Belichick. This year, the Evil Hoodie is burning for revenge. The Buccaneers have all 22 starters from their NFL Super Bowl champion team returning.
5) Week 5: Buffalo Bills at Kansas City Chiefs —
A rematch of last year’s AFC Title Game. A barn-burner? Team fans need to tune in to find out.
6) Week 6: Las Vegas Raiders at Denver Broncos —
The Raiders run a potent offense. Will their defense ever get better? The Broncos have a solid defense. Will their offense ever get better? Jon Gruden knows offense. Vic Fangio knows defense.
7) Week 7: Detroit Lions at Los Angeles Rams —
These teams swapped quarterbacks in the offseason. Jared Goff now resides with the Lions only three years after taking the Rams to the Super Bowl. Matthew Stafford is now with the Rams. After years of carrying a losing NFL team, he now leads a team with real Super Bowl aspirations.
8) Week 8: Pittsburgh Steelers at Cleveland Browns —
The Browns shocked the Steelers in the playoffs last year, jumping off to a 28-0 first-quarter lead and holding on for the win. Now Baker Mayfield and company want to show that the victory was no fluke.
9) Week 9: Green Bay Packers at Kansas City Chiefs —
These teams did not meet in the Super Bowl last year because Rodgers lost another NFC Title Game. He still has far fewer weapons than Mahomes has.
10) Week 10: Kansas City Chiefs at Las Vegas Raiders —
These teams played a pair of old AFL-style shootouts last year, with each team winning on the opposing team’s home field. In Las Vegas, Derek Carr matched Mahomes blow for blow, only to have Mahomes throw the winning touchdown with 30 seconds left. If the Silver and Black’s much-maligned defense ever needs to show up, this is the game.
11) Week 10: Los Angeles Rams at San Francisco 49ers —
These rivals went to the Super Bowl in 2018 and 2019, respectively. Sean McVay and Kyle Shanahan are both brilliant offensive strategists from very different coaching trees.
12) Week 11: Green Bay Packers at Minnesota Vikings —
Kirk Cousins has one last chance to show that he can be the guy to get the Vikings over the hump. Mike Zimmer teams are built around tough running and hard-nosed defense. If the Vikings want to have any chance of postseason success, they have to stop Rodgers.
13) Week 13: Baltimore Ravens at Pittsburgh Steelers —
For well over a decade, these AFC North rivals have been mirror images of each other. Mike Tomlin and John Harbaugh both run tough, physically disciplined teams. These head-knockers often go down to the last play, and home-field advantage rarely exists.
14) Week 14: Baltimore Ravens at Cleveland Browns —
Art Modell is long gone. But these teams will always hate each other. To be more specific, the Browns hate the Ravens and the Ravens ignore the Browns. Last year the sad-sack Browns finally got a major measure of respect by throttling Pittsburgh in the playoffs. A win over Baltimore would finally cement the Browns as a top-tier football team.
15) Week 15: Seattle Seahawks at Los Angeles Rams —
Russell Wilson has been begging for offensive line help. The Rams have one of the best defensive lines. The Seattle defense is not the Legion of Boom, but it is very good. The Rams went into Seattle and stunned the Seahawks in the playoffs. Pete Carroll knows defense as well as anyone and loves scheming against McVay.
16) Week 16: Buffalo Bills at New England Patriots —
After 20 years of being bullied, the Bills last year finally beat up the Patriots. Belichick will show us if he is still a genius or if the Patriots dynasty is truly over forever.
17) Week 16: Washington non-Redskins at Dallas Cowboys —
Mike McCarthy is a West Coast Offense guy. But the loss of Dak Prescott last year hurt his offense. Ron Rivera revitalized the Washington defense. Last year, a 7-9 record gave the DC no-names the NFC Least crown.
18) Week 17: Denver Broncos at Los Angeles Chargers —
Right now Drew Lock and Teddy Bridgewater are the signal-callers for the Broncos. Justin Herbert is locked in for the lightning bolts after his impressive rookie season. In the hyper-competitive AFC West, a playoff spot could be on the line.
19) Week 18: New Orleans Saints at Atlanta Falcons —
Pinball Wizard Drew Brees retired. That leaves Jameis Winston and Taysom Hill to run Sean Payton’s offense. Matt Ryan can still sling it, and he still can rely on a healthy Julio Jones to play pitch and catch with. Either or both these teams could turn out better than expected.
20) Week 18: Los Angeles Chargers at Las Vegas Raiders —
Herbert and Carr provide another matchup with an AFL feel to it. The Chargers have a new head coach. These teams need a win to have a shot at the postseason. Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock drafted a ton of defensive players for the purpose of stopping quarterbacks like Herbert. (And that guy in Kansas City, of course).
21) Week 18: Seattle Seahawks at Arizona Cardinals —
Kliff Kingsbury and Kyler Murray are in their third year together. They have provided some excitement, but not enough in the way of positive results. The Cardinals are considered the fourth-best team in an NFC West filled with great teams. Carroll and Wilson have been together for a decade and still see the Seahawks as Super Bowl contenders.
About the Author:
Brooklyn-born, Long Island raised and now living in Los Angeles, Eric Golub is a politically conservative columnist, blogger, author, public speaker, satirist, and comedian. But he lives for football. Particularly the Raiders.