The NFL schedule was released tonight, and the buzz leading up to it was crazy. We heard the Colts would open up at the Broncos and then that they would play the Giants at night on the road in week nine, and I reported that the Colts would play the Eagles in week two on Monday Night Football. Even though the schedule was supposed to be released at 8:00 p.m. ET, many teams leaked their schedules early, which couldn't have made NFL Network very happy, as they had an entire schedule release show.
The NFL season will get started on Thursday, September 4th with the Green Bay Packers traveling to Seattle to take on the defending Super Bowl champion Seahawks, but the Sunday Night matchup in week one is just as good: the Colts at the Broncos. What a way to start the season - Peyton Manning versus Andrew Luck, take two.
Below is the Colts entire 2014 schedule, preseason included, and then below I'll give my initial thoughts on the schedule:
Week One: @ New York Jets (Thursday, August 7, 7:00 p.m. ET)
Week Two: New York Giants (Saturday, August 16, 7:00 p.m. ET)
Week Three: New Orleans Saints (Saturday, August 23, 8:30 p.m. ET, CBS)
Week Four: @ Cincinnati Bengals (Thursday, August 28, 7:00 p.m. ET)
2014 Regular Season:
Week 1: @ Denver Broncos (Sunday, Sept. 7th, 8:30 p.m. ET, NBC)
Week 2: Philadelphia Eagles (Monday, Sept. 15th, 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN)
Week 3: @Jacksonville Jaguars (Sunday, Sept. 21st, 1:00 p.m. ET)
Week 4: Tennessee Titans (Sunday, Sept. 28th, 1:00 p.m. ET)
Week 5: Baltimore Ravens (Sunday, Oct. 5th, 1:00 p.m. ET)
Week 6: @ Houston Texans (Thursday, Oct. 9 8:25p.m. ET, NFLN)
Week 7: Cincinnati Bengals (Sunday, Oct. 19th, 1:00 p.m. ET)
Week 8: @ Pittsburgh Steelers (Sunday, Oct. 26th, 1:00 p.m. ET)
Week 9: @ New York Giants (Monday, Nov. 3. 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN)
Week 10: BYE WEEK
Week 11: New England Patriots (Sunday, Nov. 16, 8:30 p.m. ET, NBC)
Week 12: Jacksonville Jaguars (Sunday, Nov. 23rd, 1:00 p.m. ET)
Week 13: Washington Redskins (Sunday, Nov. 30th, 1:00 p.m. ET)
Week 14: @ Cleveland Browns (Sunday, Dec. 7th, 1:00 p.m. ET)
Week 15: Houston Texans (Sunday, Dec. 14th, 1:00 p.m. ET)
Week 16: @ Dallas Cowboys (Sunday, Dec. 21st, 1:00 p.m. ET)
Week 17: @ Tennessee Titans (Sunday, Dec. 28th, 1:00 p.m. ET)
Initial Thoughts and Observations:
- The first and obvious highlight of the schedule, at least early on, is the Colts traveling to Denver to play the Broncos. Of course, this means Peyton Manning versus Andrew Luck for the second time. Luck's Colts won last year in Indianapolis, and Manning looks to return the favor this year. Last year in week one was when Manning threw 7 touchdown passes, so he's been known to start hot. The Colts will need to be on the top of their game in this season-opening matchup if they want to beat the Broncos and not only that, this game could go a long way in showing us just how good the Colts can be. Also, there's a reasonable chance that this won't be the only time the two teams meet in the 2014 season, as both of them appear to have teams who could compete for a Super Bowl.
- The Colts have five night games in total - week one on Sunday Night Football at Denver, week two on Monday Night Football vs. Philadelphia, week six at Houston on Thursday Night Football, week nine at New York on Monday Night Football, and week eleven on Sunday Night Football vs. New England.
- The week two Monday Night game against the Eagles will be the first home Monday Night Football game the Colts have hosted since 2010 - Peyton Manning's last season as a Colt.
- If you ask me, the bye week comes at a perfect time. Sandwiched between two night games and right before a game against the Patriots, it will both give the Colts a chance to rest later on in the season than in the past few seasons and also will give them time to prepare for one of the best teams they will face in the 2014 season. I love where the bye week falls for the Colts this year.
- My gut reaction beforehand was that the game against the Redskins (which, of course, features Andrew Luck vs. Robert Griffin III) would be a night game, but instead it is a 1:00 game. This is a game eligible to be flexed, but still if I had to guess beforehand, I would have thought that would be one of the night games. But nope, it's currently scheduled for a 1:00 game in Indianapolis on November 30th.
- The Colts finish the regular season with three of their last four games on the road, including the last two. In the past few seasons it has seemed like the Colts have always had a late December home game, but not this year. The last home game of the regular season for the Colts is on December 11th.
Thoughts on the schedule? Hey, it's something to actually talk about other than draft stuff and it just makes me all the more excited for the season to come. Which games are you most looking forward to on the Colts 2014 schedule?