Houston Texans

Reports: Patriots open with Texans at Gillette

Reports: Patriots open with Texans at Gillette

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. 

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.

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Tyrann Mathieu signs deal with Texans

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USA TODAY Sports Photo

Tyrann Mathieu signs deal with Texans

Tyrann Mathieu is heading to the Houston.

The former Cardinals safety signed a one-year, $7 million deal with the Texans on Friday, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.

Mathieu, 25, had two interceptions with Arizona in 2017.

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Report: Giants to sign Solder

Report: Giants to sign Solder

It's another big free agency loss for the Patriots. Left tackle Nate Solder will with the New York Giants, NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reports.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that it's a four-year, $60 million deal, making Solder the highest-paid left tackle in the NFL.  

According to NBC Sports Boston Patriots insider Tom E. Curran, the Patriots made what they described as a "solid" offer to Solder a week ago.

With Solder's departure, protecting 41-year-old Tom Brady's blindside at left tackle obviously becomes a major need for the Patriots, who could end up moving Marcus Cannon over from right tackle after he missed most of last season. 

More to come.