Bucs-Cowboys opener headlines NFL Week 1

Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers open defense of the Lombardi Trophy on Sept. 9 at Raymond James Stadium.

Tampa Bay hosts the Dallas Cowboys in the primetime Thursday night opener at the site of the Bucs’ Super Bowl victory over the Kansas City Chiefs in February.

Quarterback Dak Prescott is expected to return from a season-ending ankle injury and take the field for the first time since signing a four-year, $160 million deal in March.

The full schedule for the 2021 regular season is scheduled to be released Wednesday night.

In Week 1, NBC’s Sunday night game pits the Chicago Bears visiting the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium.

The “Monday Night Football” opener features the Baltimore Ravens and Las Vegas Raiders.

Among the other key games between 2020 contenders is a playoff rematch between the Cleveland Browns and Chiefs.

Tom Brady, Bruce Arians
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

There will be intrigue involving quarterbacks in the build up of two other games: the Green Bay Packers at New Orleans Saints and the Carolina Panthers versus the New York Jets.

Aaron Rodgersfuture is in question with the Packers and the Saints are without Drew Brees, who retired after last season.

Sam Darnold is the central figure in the Panthers-Jets matchup. Darnold was acquired by Carolina from New York in April.

–Field Level Media (@FieldLevelMedia)