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Lions announce 2021 schedule

Allen Park, Mich.— The Detroit Lions announced today their 2021 regular season schedule that features a Week 1 home game against the San Francisco 49ers, their third Monday Night Football game at Lambeau Field in the past five seasons and a Thanksgiving Day matchup against the Chicago Bears. This season also marks the first 17-game schedule in NFL history.


Table inside Article
1 Sunday, September 12 vs. San Francisco 49ers FOX 1:00 p.m.
2 Monday, September 20 at Green Bay Packers ESPN 8:15 p.m.
3 Sunday, September 26 vs. Baltimore Ravens CBS 1:00 p.m.
4 Sunday, October 3 at Chicago Bears FOX 1:00 p.m.
5 Sunday, October 10 at Minnesota Vikings FOX 1:00 p.m.
6 Sunday, October 17 vs. Cincinnati Bengals FOX 1:00 p.m.
7 Sunday, October 24 at Los Angeles Rams FOX 4:05 p.m.
8 Sunday, October 31 vs. Philadelphia Eagles FOX 1:00 p.m.
10 Sunday, November 14 at Pittsburgh Steelers FOX 1:00 p.m.
11 Sunday, November 21 at Cleveland Browns FOX 1:00 p.m.
12 Thursday, November 25 vs. Chicago Bears FOX 12:30 p.m.
13 Sunday, December 5 vs. Minnesota Vikings CBS 1:00 p.m.
14 Sunday, December 12 at Denver Broncos FOX 4:05 p.m.
15 Sunday, December 19 vs. Arizona Cardinals FOX 1:00 p.m.
16 Sunday, December 26 at Atlanta Falcons FOX 1:00 p.m.
17 Sunday, January 2 at Seattle Seahawks FOX 4:25 p.m.
18 Sunday, January 9 vs. Green Bay Packers FOX 1:00 p.m.

The Lions open the 2021 NFL regular season at home against the San Francisco 49ers in what will be the first game under Head Coach Dan Campbell. This marks the fifth time Detroit and San Francisco will square off in a Week 1 contest after doing so in 1984, 1981, 1964 and 1952.

The Lions head to Green Bay to face the Packers on ESPN's Monday Night Football in Week 2, marking the second-consecutive season in which the teams will meet at Lambeau Field in Week 2. This is the fourth time Detroit will play a Monday Night Football game in Green Bay and the third time in the last five seasons.

In Week 7, Detroit makes its first trip to Los Angeles since Oct. 24, 1993 to take on the Rams. The matchup marks the return to L.A. for first-year Executive Vice President and General Manager Brad Holmes and newly-acquired QB Jared Goff. SoFi Stadium is also the only stadium on this season's slate in which Detroit has yet to play.

The Lions' intraconference games feature the AFC North division for the first time since the 2017 season, including a slate of back-to-back road games against the Pittsburgh Steelers and Cleveland Browns in Weeks 10 and 11, respectively.

Detroit's 82nd Thanksgiving Day Classic takes place Thursday, Nov. 25 at 12:30 p.m. ET as the Lions welcome the Chicago Bears for the 19th Thanksgiving Day battle between the two clubs and the third such matchup in the last four years. FOX will air the Lions' 82nd Thanksgiving Day game to a national audience. Since making their debut in 1934, the Lions are 37-42-2 overall on Thanksgiving.

As a result of the NFL's addition of a 17th game, the Lions travel to Denver to face the Broncos in Week 14. The League's formula pits the like finishers from the NFC North and AFC West in 2021.

In Week 15, Detroit and Arizona meet for the ninth time in the last 10 seasons and for the 16th time since the NFL re-aligned in 2002, the most regular season games played between non-divisional opponents in the NFL in that span.

With the addition of a 17th game in 2021, Detroit will close out the season vs. Green Bay in Week 18, only the second time Detroit has played a Week 18 game (The NFL utilized a double-bye format in 1993, resulting in the first Week 18 in NFL history). This marks the fifth time in the last six seasons that the Lions have concluded the regular season against the Packers.

The Lions' Bye Week occurs in Week 9 (Sunday, Nov. 7). The League's new three-game preseason schedule features the Lions hosting the Buffalo Bills in Week 1, a road game against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 2 and a home contest against the Indianapolis Colts in Week 3.


"Flexible scheduling" will be used in Weeks 11-18. Additionally, in Weeks 5-10, flexible scheduling may be used in no more than two weeks. In Weeks 5-17, the schedule lists the games tentatively set for Sunday Night Football on NBC. Only Sunday afternoon games are eligible to be moved to Sunday night, in which case the tentatively scheduled Sunday night game would be moved to an afternoon start time.

For Week 18, two Saturday games and the Sunday night game will be announced no later than six days prior to January 9. The schedule does not list Saturday games or a Sunday night game in Week 18, but games with playoff implications will be moved to those time slots. Flexible scheduling ensures quality matchups in all Sunday time slots in those weeks and gives "surprise" teams a chance to play their way into primetime.

Flexible scheduling will not be applied to games airing on Thursday or Monday nights.


Under the scheduling formula below, every team plays 17 regular-season games with one bye week. Clubs will host 10 games overall – either nine regular-season games and one preseason game or eight regular-season games and two preseason games.

  • Home and away against its three division opponents (six games).
  • The four teams from another division within its conference on a rotating three-year cycle (four games).
  • The four teams from a division in the other conference on a rotating four-year cycle (four games).
  • Two intraconference games based on the prior year's standings (two games). These games match a first-place team against the first-place teams in the two same-conference divisions the team is not scheduled to play that season. The second-place, third-place and fourth-place teams in a conference are matched in the same way each year.
  • One interconference game based on the prior year's standings on a rotating four-year cycle (one game). These games match a first-place team from one division against a first-place team in an opposite conference division that the team is not scheduled to play that season. The second-place, third-place and fourth-place teams in each division are matched in the same way each year. The home conference for this game will rotate each season.


The Lions are planning to host fans at Ford Field this season and have continued to enhance health and safety measures in accordance with NFL, federal, state and local guidelines.

Detroit Lions season tickets are available now with significant savings for as low as $38 dollars per month with the 12-month payment plan and can be purchased at or by calling 313.262.2222.

Single-game tickets for 2021 Detroit Lions regular season games will go on sale in July. To be alerted when single-game tickets are available sign-up at

Additionally, single-game and full season suites for 2021 are available now and can be explored at

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