Pats face Chiefs in National Football League season kickoff

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It is a bit of surprise the National Football League scheduled it in the middle of the season instead of making it a week one game.

The Jets will not open at home this year, as they did in 2016 and in the six seasons before that.

On Oct. 2, the Chiefs host the Washington Redskins on Monday Night Football, the first of two Monday Night contests.

Cancel all your plans Thursday night.

Super Bowls Redux - The Jets will meet last season's Super Bowl LI participants at home in a three-week span. Carr is expected to make a full recovery in time for training camp, and with him the Raiders are probably the best team in the AFC West.

The league announced the details for global games way back in December, so none of these will be a surprise when the schedule is officially released.

The Patriots will play at Denver the week before the Mexico City trip, so Bill Belichick may be tempted to take the entire operation on a high-altitude road trip to prepare for playing two games in a row at altitude. The Falcons ran away with a blowout victory in last season's NFC championship game.

The Browns, on the other hand, are scheduled to kick off all but one of their games at 1 p.m. ET or earlier.

If the pattern holds true, expect Thursday night games to mean something right off the bat. A mini-bye to start the season, in the middle of the season and the real bye. Teams would prefer to have a bye later in the season like this. And in the middle, there's a game featuring the Los Angeles Chargers, who went 5-11 a year ago, and the Cowboys, who went 13-3. The bye came in Week 5 previous year. Three of those come in October versus the Texans, the Raiders and the Broncos. This in addition to their annual inner-division games against the Patriots, Dolphins and Bills.