The 2021-2022 NFL season officially started on March 17, 2021. With all the free agency madness, NFL fans are champing at the bit for the new season so they can watch the new talent play on Sundays.
As of this writing, there are 169 days until the 2021 NFL season kicks off on September 9.
This season has all the potential to be as interesting and exciting as last season. The New England Patriots are loading up to make sure they don't miss the playoffs again this year. Meanwhile, Houston is also loading to attempt to repair its broken franchise.
Dark horse teams like the Jacksonville Jaguars, the New York Giants, the Detroit Lions, and the Dallas Cowboys are looking to improve their playoff chances.
Meanwhile, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers came into the offseason with one goal in mind — keep the band together in order to contend for the Super Bowl again next year. There are plenty of great matchups set for the 2021-2022 NFL season, so let's take a look at the key games for the upcoming season.
2021-2022 NFL Season: Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. New England Patriots
Tom Brady's return to Gillette Stadium comes during the 2021-2022 NFL season. NFL fans have been waiting for this game ever since Brady decided to leave New England for Tampa. Bill Belichick is getting his defense stacked up this offseason, and this meeting with Brady will certainly test the restructed unit.
This is the one game that both Brady and Belichick are desperate to win. Once Brady left the Patriots, every NFL fan wanted to see whether Belichick made Brady into the quarterback he is today.
Last season, Brady proved that the Patriots were a dominant force because of him. Once he left, the Patriots' reign over the AFC ended with a whimper. This year, Brady's return to New England could break viewership records for the NFL.
2021-2022 NFL Season: the New Orleans Saints' first game without Drew Brees
The NFL has not yet released the schedule for the 2021-2022 NFL season. But regardless of which team the New Orleans Saints' face in their opening game, this contest should a large amount of viewers. It will be the team's first game without Drew Brees on their roster since 2005.
Plus, everyone will want to see how Jameis Winston performs as the Saints' starting quarterback. Last season, the Saints opened up against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Will that be the same situation this season? Or will they play a non-divisional opponent? Only time will tell.
2021-2022 NFL Season: Detroit Lions vs. Los Angeles Rams
The first big splash of the 2021 NFL off-season was the Los Angeles Rams' trade of Jared Goff and draft picks to the Detroit Lions. The move sent Matthew Stafford to Los Angeles, making it an usual trade of star quarterbacks
Goff has already made comments about how it feels good to go to a team that actually wants him. This season, Goff will make his return to SoFi Stadium in what will surely be a revenge game.
Matthew Stafford will also play familiar faces during this football game. Stafford had spent his entire career with the Detroit Lions. Now, he's beginning a new chapter with the Rams.
Many fans will closely watch this game, hoping to see which team really won the trade between the Rams and the Lions.
2021-2022 NFL Season: the Dallas Cowboys' first game after Dak Prescott's huge deal
The Dallas Cowboys finally agreed to a long-term deal with starting quarterback Dak Prescott. This deal has been a work in progress since last offseason, but it's finally done. The last time the Dallas Cowboys' fans saw Prescott play, he was being carted off the field with a gruesome ankle injury.
NFL fans will be tuned into the Cowboys' first game of the season for many reasons. Some Fans love to see the Dallas Cowboys fail, and that's what they'll hope to watch throughout the 2021 season. Meanwhile, Cowboys fans will be watching so they can see how Prescott plays after his major injury and his huge contract extension.