2019 NFL season

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2019 National Football League season
NFL100th.png
The NFL's centennial emblem, which will be used throughout 2019.
Regular season
DurationSeptember 5, 2019 (2019-09-05) – December 29, 2019 (2019-12-29)
Playoffs
Start dateJanuary 4, 2020
Super Bowl LIV
DateFebruary 2, 2020 (tentative)
SiteHard Rock Stadium, Miami Gardens, Florida
Pro Bowl
DateJanuary 26, 2020 (tentative)
SiteTBD

The 2019 NFL season will be the 100th season of the National Football League (NFL). The season will tentatively begin on September 5, 2019, in the home stadium of the Super Bowl LIII champion. The season will conclude with Super Bowl LIV, the league's championship game, tentatively scheduled for February 2, 2020, at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami, Florida.

Player movement[edit]

Retirements[edit]

Others[edit]

Draft[edit]

The 2019 NFL Draft will be held from April 25–27 in Nashville, Tennessee.[6]

2019 deaths[edit]

Preseason[edit]

Training Camps for the 2019 season will be held in late July through August. Teams will start training camp no earlier than 15 days before the team's first scheduled preseason game.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame Game, with teams to be announced, is tentatively scheduled for August 1, 2019, and will be televised nationally by NBC. The game will be held at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton, Ohio, the same city where the league was founded 99 years prior.

The Los Angeles Rams will play one of their 2019 preseason games at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii, the former home of the Pro Bowl.[7]

NFL centennial promotions[edit]

On October 18, 2018, the NFL announced that it would commemorate its 100th season throughout 2019, beginning at Super Bowl LIII. An NFL 100 emblem will be featured in promotions across all NFL properties during the season, worn on jerseys as a patch, placed on game balls, and painted on fields.[8][9]

The Chicago Bears (who, as the Decatur Staleys, were one of the 14 charter members of the league) will also celebrate their centennial season with commemorative events throughout 2019. On November 15, 2018, the team unveiled a customized version of the league-wide centennial emblem (which will be worn on jerseys in place of the NFL-branded version), and announced that the team would introduce a throwback jersey.[10]

Regular season[edit]

The 2019 regular season's 256 games will be played over a 17-week schedule that is expected to begin on September 5, 2019. Each of the league's 32 teams will play a 16 game schedule, with one bye week. There will be games on Monday nights and on Thursdays, Including the National Football League Kickoff game and games on Thanksgiving Day. The regular season will conclude with a full slate of 16 games, tentatively scheduled for December 29, all of which are expected to be intra-division matchups, as it had been since 2010.

Scheduling formula

Under the NFL's current scheduling formula, each team plays the other three teams in its own division twice. In addition, a team plays against all four teams in one other division from each conference. The final two games on a team's schedule are against the two remaining teams in the same conference that finished in the same position in their respective divisions (e.g., the team that finished fourth in its division will play all three other teams in the conference that also finished fourth). The division parings for 2019 will be as follows:

    Intra-conference
AFC East vs AFC North
AFC West vs AFC South
NFC East vs NFC North
NFC West vs NFC South

    Inter-conference
AFC East vs NFC East
AFC North vs NFC West
AFC South vs NFC South
AFC West vs NFC North

The entire schedule will be released in April 2019 Highlights of the 2019 season include:

  • NFL Kickoff Game: The Kickoff Game is tentatively scheduled for September 5.
  • NFL International Series: Five games will be held outside the United States in 2019. In addition to the Jacksonville Jaguars and the three teams hosting an annual game abroad as part of their relocation agreements (the Los Angeles Chargers, Los Angeles Rams, and Oakland Raiders), the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will also host a home game abroad. Opponents, dates and times will be released with the rest of the schedule in April 2019.[11]
    • NFL London Games: Four[12] games will be played in London, with two of the games set to debut at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium after construction delays prevented the stadium from opening in time for the 2018 game scheduled there. The remaining two games will be played at Wembley Stadium, one of which will be hosted by the Jaguars as part of the team's long-term agreement to play an annual game in London.[13]
    • NFL Mexico Game: The NFL will play one game at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City in 2019.
  • Thanksgiving Day: As has been the case since 2006, three games will be played on November 28, including the traditional afternoon doubleheader hosted by the Detroit Lions and Dallas Cowboys respectively, as well as a primetime game.

Postseason[edit]

The 2019 Playoffs are tentatively scheduled to begin on the weekend of January 4–5, 2020, with the Wild Card Playoff round. The four winners of these games will visit the top two seeds in each conference in the Divisional round games, tentatively scheduled for January 11–12. The winners of those games will advance to the Conference championships tentatively scheduled for January 19. The 2020 Pro Bowl will be held at a site to be announced, tentatively scheduled for January 26 and will be broadcast on ESPN. Super Bowl LIV, tentatively scheduled for February 2, will be played at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami on Fox.

Head coaching and front office personnel changes[edit]

Head coaches[edit]

Off-season[edit]

Team Departing coach Interim coach Incoming coach Reason for leaving Notes
Arizona Cardinals Steve Wilks Kliff Kingsbury Fired Wilks was fired on December 31, 2018, after a 3–13 (.188) season. This was Wilks' only season with the Cardinals.[14] He later joined the Cleveland Browns as a defensive coordinator.[15]

Kingsbury, who was previously the head coach of Texas Tech for six seasons, was hired on January 8, 2019. This is Kingsbury's first NFL coaching position.[16]

Cincinnati Bengals Marvin Lewis TBA Mutual decision Lewis and the Bengals parted ways on December 31 after a 6–10 (.375) season. In 16 years as the Bengals' head coach, Lewis was 131–122–3 (.518), with 7 playoff appearances. Notably, the Bengals never won a playoff game under Lewis and had missed the playoffs in each of his last three seasons.[17]
Cleveland Browns Hue Jackson Gregg Williams Freddie Kitchens Fired Jackson was fired on October 29, 2018, accumulating a 3–36–1 (.088) record during his 2½-season tenure with the Browns. Jackson failed to win any away games during his tenure and lost every game in 2017.[18] He rejoined the Cincinnati Bengals as an assistant coach immediately after his firing. Defensive coordinator Gregg Williams finished out the 2018 season with a 5–3 (.625) record. Released by the Browns on January 9, 2019, Williams later joined the New York Jets as a defensive coordinator.

Kitchens was promoted to head coach on January 12, 2019, after serving as the interim offensive coordinator following Jackson's firing.[19]

Denver Broncos Vance Joseph Vic Fangio Joseph was fired on December 31, 2018, after a 6–10 (.375) season. The Broncos were 11–21 (.344) in Joseph's two losing seasons as head coach, with no playoff appearances.[20] He joined the Arizona Cardinals as a defensive coordinator.[21]

Fangio, a first-time head coach with over 30 years experience as an assistant dating back to the USFL, most recently as defensive coordinator of the Chicago Bears, was hired January 10.[22]

Green Bay Packers Mike McCarthy Joe Philbin Matt LaFleur McCarthy was fired on December 2, 2018, shortly after the Packers' loss to the Arizona Cardinals. McCarthy leaves with a record of 135–85–2 (.613) with nine playoff appearances and one Super Bowl championship. Philbin, the team's offensive coordinator, finished the season as interim coach with a record of 2–2 (.500).[23]

LaFleur was hired on January 8, 2019. Previously the offensive coordinator for the Tennessee Titans in 2018, this is his first head coaching position.[24]

Miami Dolphins Adam Gase TBA Gase was fired on December 31, 2018, after a 7–9 (.438) season. The Dolphins were 23–25 (.479) in Gase's three years as head coach, with one playoff appearance in 2016.[25] He was later hired by Dolphins' division rivals, the New York Jets, as head coach.[26]
New York Jets Todd Bowles Adam Gase Bowles was fired on December 30, 2018, finishing the season with a record of 4–12 (.250) and a cumulative record of 24–40 (.375) with no playoff appearances in four seasons with Jets.[27] He joined the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a defensive coordinator.[28]

Gase, who was previously the head coach of the Miami Dolphins, posting a 23–25 (.479) record in three seasons, was hired on January 11, 2019.[26]

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Dirk Koetter Bruce Arians Koetter was fired on December 30, 2018, after a 5–11 (.313) season. The Buccaneers were 19–29 (.396) in Koetter's three years as head coach, with no playoff appearances. Previously, Koetter was Buccaneers' offensive coordinator for one season in 2015.[29] He rejoined the Atlanta Falcons as an offensive coordinator.[30]

Arians was announced as the Buccaneers' new head coach on January 8, 2019. He was previously the head coach for the Arizona Cardinals for five seasons with 49–30–1 (.619) record from 2013 to 2017.[31]

Front office personnel[edit]

Off-season[edit]

Team Position Departing office holder Interim replacement Incoming office holder Reason for leaving Notes
Baltimore Ravens GM Ozzie Newsome Eric DeCosta Retired The Ravens announced on February 2, 2018 that Newsome would retire after 16 years as the team's GM and that Eric DeCosta, most recently the Ravens' assistant GM, would succeed Newsome.[32] Newsome was the first African-American to occupy the GM position in the NFL.[33]
Oakland Raiders GM Reggie McKenzie Shaun Herock Mike Mayock Fired McKenzie was fired on December 10, 2018, after six-plus seasons as Raiders' GM.[34] Herock, team's director of college scouting, served as the Raiders’ interim GM until the team settles on a full-time replacement.

Mayock had previously been a television commentator for the past 26 seasons and has never held a front office position.[35]

Stadiums[edit]

This will be the third and final season for the Los Angeles Chargers at ROKiT Field at Dignity Health Sports Park,[36] and this will also be the fourth and final season for the Los Angeles Rams at United Airlines Memorial Coliseum (as each stadium will be known in 2019 under new naming rights deals). Both the Chargers and the Rams will move to Los Angeles Stadium at Hollywood Park in Inglewood, California in 2020.

A buyout window in the Buffalo Bills' lease on New Era Field opens after the 2019 season ends. The window allows the team to cancel its lease on the stadium for a $28 million fee and relocate. If the Bills choose not to exercise the buyout window, they will not be allowed to relocate until the lease expires after the 2022 season.[37]

Raiders relocation[edit]

The Oakland Raiders' lease on Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum expires after the 2018 season. The team is slated to move to Las Vegas, Nevada once Las Vegas Stadium is completed; it is currently scheduled to open in 2020. The Coliseum management has expressed a reluctance to allow the Raiders to continue using the Coliseum after the lease expires unless the team pays more to cover the losses the Coliseum incurs by hosting Raiders games. In December 2018, the city of Oakland filed a lawsuit against the Raiders and the NFL seeking financial damages and unpaid debt, claiming the proposed relocation is illegal but not asking for an injunction forcing the team to stay. The Raiders have stated that if any legal action were filed against them, that they would not renew with the Coliseum and find another, undetermined, temporary home for 2019 until Las Vegas Stadium is finished.[38] As of January 2019, the three sites being considered for the Raiders in 2019 are Oracle Park in San Francisco, SDCCU Stadium in San Diego, and Mackay Stadium in Reno, Nevada,[39] with lobbyists for Tucson, Arizona also claiming that their city and its Arizona Stadium are also being considered as a longshot.[40]

Media[edit]

This will be the sixth year under the current broadcast contracts with ESPN, CBS, Fox and NBC. This includes "cross-flexing" (switching) Sunday afternoon games between CBS and Fox before or during the season (regardless of the conference of the visiting team). NBC will continue to air Sunday Night Football, the annual Kickoff Game, and the primetime Thanksgiving game. ESPN will continue to air Monday Night Football and the Pro Bowl. Fox will continue to air Thursday Night Football alongside with NFL Network, with Amazon Video and Twitch.tv continuing to simulcast those games online in the second and final year of that site's current contract. Fox will also broadcast Super Bowl LIV.

In November 2018, ESPN announced that it would air coverage for all three days of the 2019 NFL Draft on ABC, replacing Fox's broadcast television simulcast of NFL Network in 2018. ABC's coverage will cater towards a mainstream audience and be hosted by the panel of ESPN's College GameDay, while ESPN and NFL Network will continue to carry more conventional coverage of the draft.[41]

References[edit]

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