The moment you've been waiting for is finally here!
Earlier this week, the NFL made a scheduled announcement about the announcement of the NFL schedule, and that announcement has now been announced so add it to your schedule.
Here is the Denver Broncos Schedule for the 2017 season:
BOLD = Home
All times Mountain
Week 1 vs. L.A. Chargers, Mon. Sept. 11 (8:20 pm, ESPN) Week 2 vs. Dallas Cowboys, Sun. Sept. 17 (2:25 pm, FOX)
Week 3 at Buffalo Bills, Sun. Sept. 24 (11 am, CBS) Week 4 vs. Oakland Raiders, Sun. Oct. 1 (2:25 pm, CBS)
Week 5 BYE Week 6 vs. New York Giants, Sun. Oct. 15 (6:30 pm, NBC)
Week 7 at L.A. Chargers, Sun. Oct. 22 (2:25 pm, CBS)
Week 8 at Kansas City Chiefs, Mon. Oct. 30 (6:30 pm, ESPN)
Week 9 at Philadelphia Eagles, Sun. Nov. 5 (1 pm, CBS) Week 10 vs. New England Patriots, Sun. Nov. 12 (6:30 pm, NBC) Week 11 vs. Cincinnati Bengals, Sun, Nov. 19 (2:25 pm, CBS)
Week 12 at Oakland Raiders, Sun. Nov. 26 (2:25 pm, CBS)
Week 13 at Miami Dolphins, Sun. Dec. 3 (11 am CBS) Week 14 vs. New York Jets, Sun. Dec. 10 (2:05 pm, CBS)
Week 15 at Indianapolis Colts, Thu. Dec. 14 (6:25 pm, NBC/NFLN)
Week 16 at Washington Redskins, Sun. Dec. 24 (11 am, CBS) Week 17 vs. Kansas City Chiefs, Sun. Dec. 31 (2:05 pm, CBS)
Better start hot ?
The Broncos play four of their first five games at home and have an early bye week (Week 5). For a team with uncertainty under center and a new staff at the helm, it's a bit of a tall order, but the Broncos need to come out strong. A top-heavy home schedule means a bottom heave away schedule and the Broncos close with four of six on the road.
“My eyes go to Week 1," head coach Vance Joseph said in a release from the team. "It’s important to get off to a great start. It’s a home game, and it’s in division, so that’s important.”
Winning on the road is not easy, so the team needs to build some padding for themselves early in the season. No pressure, VJ.
As mentioned above, the Broncos will have their Bye Week fairly early in the season. A Week 5 Bye is the second earliest you can have in the NFL, and the Broncos have only had it once in their history (1994). Not to worry you about that whole hot start thing, but that time the team had a Week 5 Bye, they started 0-4.
“I think the [anticipation of the] bye week is always based on where your team is at that moment—Injuries and how you rest your football team," Joseph said. "Early, mid or late, it’s all game planned around where your team feels. Having it early after four games, it’s a good deal. I place the season in quarters. In the first four weeks, we get our first quarter over then we have our bye. It’s always good. You hope to be successful obviously in that first quarter. But, to have that chance in week 5 to reboot and reset it again is important.”
It's not often you see a team have three games in a row either way, but that home-heavy start means the Broncos spend the rest of the season trying to balance back out and that means a three-game "road trip" from Weeks 7 to 9.
The trip starts with the team's first trip to visit the newly re-located Los Angeles Chargers, is split by a Monday-nighter in Kansas City and ends with an East-coast trip to Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia.
“Playing good defense on the road is always a must—keeping the point totals low and controlling the football, not turning the football over," said the head coach. "Two out of three are division opponents. Two out of three are fairly easy trips (travel-wise). We do have a trip to Philly, which is a cross-country trip. It’s important to be a good road team. You have to play well on the road to be a playoff team. It doesn’t bother me. Obviously, three straight is a great challenge. I’m looking forward to it.”
The Broncos have a .333 winning percentage all-time during their 15 thee-game roadies.
The Broncos are scheduled for five prime-time games this season, two on Monday Night Football, two on Sunday Night Football and one on Thursday Night Football. They are one of just 10 teams who make five appearances under the bright lights.
The team's opening-night appearance on MNF marks 26 straight seasons the have been featured on the regular season's biggest stage. That's good enough for the second-longest such streak in the league.
Denver head coach Vance Joseph will make his return to Miami—where he served as the defensive coordinator last season—in Week 13.
“It’s just business for me," he said. "My first thought: it was December 3, so the weather won’t be a factor. If you play there in September, even October, it’s so warm for your football team, and it’s a disadvantage. But, being December 3, I’m okay with it. It’s going to be a business trip for me.”
VJ will also get a chance to see his old friends, the Cincinnati Bengals, when they travel to Denver in Week 11. Joseph served as the defensive backs coach in 2015 and 2015. If you remember, the Bengals blocked Joseph from interviewing for the Denver defensive coordinator job when Gary Kubiak was assembling his staff.
As Coach Joseph mentioned above, when you make a road trip matters. The Broncos were lucky enough to get their Miami trip late in the season—when a trip to the beach will sound quite nice—and their Buffalo trip early in the season—when the Northeast won't be more of a miserable mess than it normally is.
After carefully evaluating the schedule and assuming a bunch of things about games that won't be played for at least five months, I have determined the Broncos will go 9-7 and sneak into the playoffs. Absolutely do not take that to the books.