The NFL released its full 2020 schedule tonight, and the Bears will have an intriguing road as they try to return to the playoffs. Here’s their schedule:
Week 1, 9/13 (12 p.m.), at Lions, FOX
Week 2, 9/20 (12 p.m.), vs. Giants, CBS
Week 3, 9/27 (12 p.m.), at Falcons, FOX
Week 4, 10/4 (12 p.m.), vs. Colts, CBS
Week 5, 10/8 (Thu.; 7:20 p.m.), vs. Buccaneers, NFLN/FOX/Amazon
Week 6, 10/18 (12 p.m.), at Panthers, FOX
Week 7, 10/26 (Mon.; 7:15 p.m.), at Rams, ESPN
Week 8, 11/1 (3:25 p.m.), vs. Saints, FOX
Week 9, 11/8 (12 p.m.), at Titans, FOX
Week 10, 11/16 (Mon.; 7:15 p.m.), vs. Vikings, ESPN
Week 11, 11/19-23 — BYE
Week 12, 11/29 (7:20 p.m.), at Packers, NBC
Week 13, 12/6 (12 p.m.), vs. Lions, FOX
Week 14, 12/13 (12 p.m.), vs. Texans, CBS
Week 15, 12/20 (12. p.m.), at Vikings, FOX
Week 16, 12/27 (12 p.m.), at Jaguars, FOX
Week 17, 1/3 (12 p.m.), vs. Packers, FOX
Bears tickets will go on sale at 8 p.m. Thursday. Fans will get full refunds — payable within 30 days — if games are canceled or played without fans.
The Bears’ 2020 opponents have been known since December. Those are based on the NFL’s scheduling formula, which rotates each year.
The Bears have long been slotted to face the entire AFC South and NFC South, plus the same-place finisher (the Bears were third in their division last season) in the NFC East and West. They play six games in the NFC North every year.
Their upcoming opponents had a combined .508 winning percentage in 2019, giving the Bears the 13th-toughest schedule for this season.
There’s extra attention on the schedule release this year because the NFL will become the first major sports league to announce dates to resume games amid the coronavirus pandemic. The NBA, NHL and MLB seasons are currently suspended and at risk of being canceled.
The NFL has said it will release a full, typical schedule — 16 games in 17 weeks, beginning with a Thursday night opener Sept. 10. Whether that’s realistic is debatable. The league has two and a half months until training camps would normally open, but every team facility is currently closed indefinitely. Illinois also has a ban on gatherings of 10 or more people.