NFL Week 1 2024 Revealed: Can Ravens vs. Chiefs Crack the Top 10 Season Openers of All-Time?

    Ravens-Chiefs has a chance to be the greatest NFL Week 1 Thursday night game ever. But the competition for the best NFL season opener of all time is fierce.

    The NFL season opens with a chop in 2024. The league revealed Monday that the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs will host the Baltimore Ravens in Week 1, opening the season on Thursday Night Football.

    The matchup continues the league’s recent tradition of having the defending champs open the ensuing season, and the rematch of last year’s AFC Championship Game will be an excellent first test for the Chiefs in their quest to three-peat.

    Patrick Mahomes vs. Lamar Jackson has a chance to be the best TNF Week 1 showdown in the two decades since the NFL began opening the season on Thursday night. Here is PFN’s list of the top 10 TNF season openers of all time.

    Top 10 All-Time TNF NFL Week 1 Games

    2021: Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31, Dallas Cowboys 29

    This glamor matchup simply delivered. The Cowboys rallied from a nine-point deficit to take the lead on a 48-yard Greg Zuerlein field goal with 1:24 left, only to allow Tom Brady to direct an 11-play, 57-yard drive that set up a 36-yard game-winner by Ryan Succop.

    Four different receivers went over 100 yards in this epic shootout.

    2016: Denver Broncos 21, Carolina Panthers 20

    The league decided to open the 2016 campaign by running back the Super Bowl that ended the 2015 season. And the result was the same — even though Peyton Manning was no longer under center for Denver.

    C.J. Anderson scored two fourth-quarter touchdowns, and the Broncos survived a 50-yard Graham Gano field-goal attempt in the final seconds that sailed wide left.

    2023: Detroit Lions 21, Kansas Chiefs 20

    The Lions proved to the world that they were for real by going into Arrowhead and toppling the defending champs on banner night. Andy Reid bizarrely elected to go for it on 4th-and-25 from his own 30 despite having all three K.C. timeouts and the two-minute warning remaining. The Lions made the stop and didn’t give up the ball again.

    MORE: 7 Revenge Games That Will Be Must-See TV

    2002: San Francisco 49ers 16, New York Giants 13

    The Giants started and ended their 2002 season with gutting losses to the 49ers. After tying the game inside the two-minute warning on a Tiki Barber touchdown run, the Giants allowed Jeff Garcia and the 49ers to march well into field-goal range on just six plays, leading to a 36-yard game-winning kick by Jose Cortez.

    Four months later, the Niners stunned the Giants again in the playoffs.

    2009: Pittsburgh Steelers 13, Tennessee Titans 10 (OT)

    Pittsburgh overcame three turnovers — including a fumble by Hines Ward at the Tennessee 4-yard line with under a minute to play — and terrible third-down efficiency (the Steelers converted on just four of 14 tries) to win on a 33-yard Jeff Reed field goal on the first drive in overtime.

    2015: New England Patriots 28, Pittsburgh Steelers 21

    This was a vintage Brady game: 25 of 32 passing for 288 yards and four touchdowns — including three to Rob Gronkowski (16, six, and one yards).

    The Patriots prevailed despite allowing 464 yards of offense (on seven yards per play) because they converted all four of their red-zone trips into touchdowns.

    2018: Philadelphia Eagles 18, Atlanta Falcons 12

    Jay Ajayi broke loose for an 11-yard go-ahead touchdown run with 2:19 left (and converted the ensuing two-point conversion) to carry the defending champs past the Falcons. It would be just one of nine wins for Philadelphia on the year. The Falcons, meanwhile, struggled through a 7-9 season.

    2010: New Orleans Saints 14, Minnesota Vikings 9

    In a rematch of the famed Bountygate NFC Championship Game, Drew Brees vs. Brett Favre wasn’t the shootout the NFL probably hoped it would be. Instead, it was a defensive struggle, with the defending champion Saints holding the Vikings to just two first downs in the second half.

    KEEP READING: Storylines to Watch in Chiefs vs. Ravens Opener

    2019: Green Bay Packers 10, Chicago Bears 3

    The NFL kicked off its 100th season by going back to its roots. Packers-Bears is the oldest rivalry in pro football, and so the league made an exception this year by having the defending champs (the Patriots) open on Sunday to give this throwback game top billing.

    The game wasn’t pretty (467 total yards, one touchdown), but it was nostalgic.

    2003: Washington 16, New York Jets 13

    The Jets and the NFL franchise from Washington were two bad teams in 2003. They won a combined 11 games and finished far out of the playoff hunt. But they played an entertaining opener that year, with new Washington kicker John Hall making his first three attempts with his new team, including a 33-yard game-winner with five seconds left.

    Listen to the PFN Dolphins Podcast

    Listen to the PFN Dolphins Podcast! Click the embedded player below to listen, or you can find the PFN Dolphins Podcast on iTunes, Spotify, and all major podcast platforms.  Be sure to subscribe and leave us a five-star review! Rather watch instead? Check out the PFN Dolphins Podcast on our NFL YouTube channel.

    Related Articles