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2018 NFL Pre-Season
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2018/19 NFL Season Key Dates
Updated: July 2018


With the July 4th holiday gone, summer is officially in full swing. For NFL fans, it also means that training camps are on the horizon. NFL teams are permitted to begin their preseason camp no earlier than 15 days prior to their first scheduled preseason game or July 15, whichever comes later. Teams are allowed to bring rookies in seven days prior to the day that veterans report. Once training camps start, the 2018 NFL season will not be far behind. Here’s a look at the key dates of the 2018 season.


Mid-July Training camps begin. The earliest start date is for Baltimore Ravens’ rookies who must report on July 22. All teams will be in camp by July 30, the date that San Francisco and Houston veterans report.


Aug. 2

Hall of Fame weekend. The preseason kicks off with the annual Hall of Fame game in Canton, Ohio. The Baltimore Ravens will make their first appearance in the game and will take on the Chicago Bears. The Bears are 4-0 in Hall of Fame games. The weekend concludes with the induction of the Class of 2018 which includes such NFL greats as Brian Urlacher, Ray Lewis, and Randy Moss.

 

Aug. 9-13

First week of preseason play. All 32 teams will be in action with 12 games on Thursday and two each on Friday and Saturday.

 

Aug. 30

Final week of preseason play. All 32 teams will play on Thursday night to end the preseason.

 

Sept. 1

Roster deadline. All 32 teams must submit their final 53-man rosters to the league office by 4 p.m. ET. Teams that have any players on the PUP (Physically Unable to Perform) or NFI (Non-Football Injury/Illness) lists must place those players on one of those lists permanently, waive them, terminate their contracts, trade the players, or place them on the active roster.

 

Sept. 6

Regular season begins. The 2018 NFL season kicks off on Thursday night with the Atlanta Falcons traveling to the home of the Super Bowl LII champion, the Philadelphia Eagles. Since 2004, the NFL’s Kickoff Game has been hosted by the defending Super Bowl champ. Game time is set for 8:20 p.m.

 

Sept. 9-10

NFL Week 1 of the regular season continues with 13 games on Sunday. As is tradition, Week 1 concludes with a pair of games on Monday night. The New York Jets travel to Detroit in the first game and the Los Angeles Rams and Oakland Raiders meet in the nightcap

 

Oct. 16-17

League’s annual fall meeting. League officials and team owners meet to discuss everything from rules changes to the sale of a franchise.

 

Oct. 21

Originally known as the NFL’s International Series, the NFL London Games will take place once again at Wembley Stadium in 2018. Tennessee will face the Los Angeles Chargers in the first game in the series.

Oct. 28

The second game of this year’s London Games will pit Philadelphia against Jacksonville. The Jaguars appearance will be their fifth straight in London. The Jags beat Baltimore 44-7 last season marking Jacksonville’s third consecutive victory in an international game.

 

Oct. 30

NFL trade deadline. All trades must be finalized and reported to the league office by 4 p.m. ET.


Dec. 30

WEEK 17, the final week of the 2018 regular season. All teams will play on Sunday. There is no Thursday game and there is no Monday night game.


Jan. 5-6

Wild Card Weekend. Two wild card teams qualify for the playoffs in each
conference. In this first weekend of postseason play, the wild cards face the lowest-seeded division winners in their respective conference.

 

Jan. 12-13

Divisional Playoffs. The winners from Wild Card Weekend advance to face the two highest-seeded division winners in each conference. Winners of these games advance to the following week’s conference championship games.


Jan. 20

AFC & NFC Championship games. The highest seeded team in each conference hosts the championship game.

 

Feb. 3

Super Bowl LIII. This year’s ultimate game will be played at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Ga. This will be the third time that the city of Atlanta has hosted a Super Bowl. The other two games were played in the old Georgia Dome.



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