The Patriots will open the regular season by hosting the Houston Texans at 1 p.m. at Gillette Stadium, according to multiple reports.
The NFL schedule will officially be released tonight at 8, but Jeff Howe of The Athletic, among others, tweeted the 2018-19 schedule earlier Thursday.
Here’s the Patriots’ full regular-season schedule: pic.twitter.com/kzCGq8Ynef— Jeff Howe (@jeffphowe) April 19, 2018
Marc Bertrand of 98.5 The SportsHub, host of the Patriots radio network's pre- and postgame shows, was first to tweet some of the schedule details, including the opener.
The Patriots lost to Houston 36-33 in Week 3 of the regular season at Gillette. Rookie quarterback DeShaun Watson threw for 301 yards and two touchdowns before his season-ending ACL injury in October. He's aiming to return for the season-opener.
After an AFC Championship Game rematch in Jacksonville in Week 2 on Sept. 16, there's a Week 3 Sunday night matchup with the Lions that will be a reunion with former Pats defensive coordinator Matt Patricia, now the head coach in Detroit.
The Pats have back-to-back prime-time games with a Monday night matchup in Buffalo on Oct. 29 and a Sunday night game at Gillette against Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers Nov. 4.
That's followed by a Week 10 game on Nov. 11 at Tennessee, which will feature former Patriots cornerback Malcolm Butler and running back Dion Lewis, now with the Titans, who are coached by ex-Pats linebacker Mike Vrabel.
After a bye in Week 11, the Patriots finish with AFC East opponents in four of their final six games. There's also a rematch with the Steelers at Pittsburgh in Week 15 on Dec. 16, almost exactly a year after New England won there 27-24 after an end-zone interception and controversial reversed call on apparent Steelers TD to help clinch the No. 1 seed in the AFC.
NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE