The 2023 NFL schedule was released on Thursday night. Fans can now make their travel plans and start playing their favorite game of predicting win-loss records in 2023. We’re doing the same, so dive in below to see how the schedule release affects all 32 teams’ record predictions.
Predicting Every Team’s Win-Loss Record in 2023
After considering each team’s strength of schedule, particular schedule quirks, roster strength, and the overall direction of the franchise, we’ve done the work to project all 272 wins and 272 losses that will inevitably take place in the 2023 season.
Arizona Cardinals: 4-13
There’s not a whole lot to like about the Arizona Cardinals in 2023 unless quarterback Kyler Murray makes a miraculous recovery from his torn ACL. New head coach Jonathan Gannon was an underwhelming choice for many, and the Cardinals are in the early stages of rebuilding their roster.
Murray posted an encouraging workout video in early April, but if he’s at all hampered this season, the Cardinals simply won’t create enough offense to win. It’d be less surprising to see the Cardinals start selling off their assets, including DeAndre Hopkins, Marquise Brown, and Budda Baker, than for this team to be anywhere near good.
Atlanta Falcons: 6-11
The Falcons were one of the most pleasant surprises of the 2022 season, thanks to their dominant run game. Adding Bijan Robinson will give the strength of the team even more juice, but it doesn’t help the two big question marks on the roster. Quarterback Desmond Ridder has to do more than throw for 6.2 yards per attempt for this offense to be good, and the defense must take a big leap.
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Atlanta bolstered the defense with a few old veterans and safety Jessie Bates III, making them better. However, a lot of change in a short time isn’t always a good thing. Both Carolina and New Orleans made more significant waves in the NFC South, and Atlanta’s run-heavy craze seems less likely to repeat itself than it is to be a stepping stone for the franchise.
The Falcons do have a favorable schedule, but so does the entire conference. Home games against the Packers, Vikings, and Commanders will likely tilt their final record to land between six and eight wins.
Baltimore Ravens: 9-8
While Lamar Jackson’s 6,000-yard passing goal is unreasonable, the former MVP quarterback is set up for the best season of his career. The Ravens’ additions of offensive coordinator Todd Monken and receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and Zay Flowers could be massive. However, there are risks with each that could also swing the other way.
The biggest concern within the Ravens’ control is their defense. Their cornerback depth is completely unproven, and their pass-rush rotation is also young. We knew the team had to eventually get younger, but it was shocking they invested so little into the back end of the defense when they’re set to face Joe Burrow and Deshaun Watson four times a year.
In addition to a tough AFC North schedule, the Dolphins, Lions, Chargers, and 49ers stand out as premier matchups. The Ravens have a high ceiling but also injury risks that have tempered my expectations.
Buffalo Bills: 11-6
The AFC East looks to be a menacing race to the end of the season. Buffalo, who has produced a quiet but tactful offseason, might be getting slept on too much. Quarterback Josh Allen still has Stefon Diggs at his disposal, and the continuity of the roster can help them reach a new level in 2023.
However, that may not show in their regular-season record. They learned the hard way in 2022 that battling for the top seed doesn’t matter much. Between the increased competition in their division, the second-hardest schedule in general, and focusing more on improving their process, the Bills win the AFC East with 11 wins.
Carolina Panthers: 8-9
After a season that was almost unwatchable due to the quarterback play, the Carolina Panthers made sweeping changes in order to turn their franchise around. Top overall pick Bryce Young has a completely refreshed set of playmakers around him, including running back Miles Sanders and receivers DJ Chark, Adam Thielen, and Jonathan Mingo. It’s a talented group that should at least be competent, even if it doesn’t have a high ceiling.
New head coach Frank Reich will have to craft a unique offense that maximizes everyone’s skill set. There’s a lack of stardom around Young, but planning on getting Sanders “50 catches” isn’t a good solution. This offense is one injury away from being uninspiring.
The Panthers didn’t get many schedule breaks, either. Their defense will be particularly challenged against the Lions, Dolphins, Seahawks, and Cowboys.
Chicago Bears: 7-10
The NFC North looks ready for a battle of middling rosters. Chicago did well to maximize their assets this offseason, adding Tremaine Edmunds, DJ Moore, and Darnell Wright. The overall depth of the roster looks much healthier than it did last year, and now the challenge is to develop playmakers.
Quarterback Justin Fields will be at the forefront of that. He’s on his way to being a franchise quarterback after the Bears bolstered his receiving room and offensive line. The bar has been raised for this team to become competitive as they learn to win with young talent all over.
A favorable home schedule will help them rack up wins, but their road journey is difficult. Going to the Saints and Browns will test their young fortitude, and they caught a tough break by going to Kansas City and not playing the Chiefs in Germany instead.
Cincinnati Bengals: 11-6
The Cincinnati Bengals have hit a point where we know what to expect of them. Their offense will be excellent, and the defense, despite replacing several key secondary members, will operate at a high level. They must survive the AFC North, and they’ll be major Super Bowl contenders.
It’s hard to imagine the Bengals could have gotten a more favorable schedule release. Facing the Chiefs in the final week of the season may not even matter since both teams could rest starters by then. Hosting the Seahawks and Rams is much less worrisome than the opposite possibility, so the Bengals should fare well this season.
Cleveland Browns: 10-7
I have the Cleveland Browns as one of my top Super Bowl sleepers, as I expect their offense to be much improved in 2023. With Watson no longer rusty and playing in a more spread offense with capable weapons, the Browns have serious talent worth watching. Getting favorable home draws will certainly help that.
The two toughest road games that could swing their season come at the Seahawks and at the Broncos. Both are much better home teams than on the road, and Cleveland must notch as many wins as possible in order to survive the brutal AFC North.
Dallas Cowboys: 12-5
The Dallas Cowboys should have their eyes on winning the Super Bowl and nothing else. Their roster is that good, and they wisely added veterans at major positions of need while spending very little. Both Stephon Gilmore and Brandin Cooks are notable enough upgrades to raise the Cowboys’ ceiling.
However, everything comes down to how quarterback Dak Prescott plays. He’ll be tested in road games against the Chargers, Dolphins, and 49ers. If he doesn’t play more like he did in 2020 before his fractured ankle, then the Cowboys will struggle to get past 10 wins in a competitive NFC East.
Denver Broncos: 8-9
Can Sean Payton be the savior for Russell Wilson? The Denver Broncos have everything in place for this team to compete for a deep playoff run, but the question mark at quarterback looms large. What we saw out of Wilson in 2022 is hard to shake until we see evidence to the contrary.
The Broncos’ schedule ended up with a more favorable end of the season, so they can potentially rack up some wins after Week 10’s showdown with Buffalo.
Detroit Lions: 9-8
The expectation for the Detroit Lions’ offseason was for the franchise to address their bottom-five defense. Instead, they augmented their top-five offense by allocating three of their first five draft picks to that side of the ball. They also failed to add a proven cornerback despite taking three defenders in the top 100.
The Lions will be a fun team once again, but the six-game suspension of Jameson Williams will make the start of the season more challenging. They don’t have the hardest schedule, but key showdowns at the Chiefs, Chargers, Saints, Ravens, and Cowboys stand out. Detroit will need to be excellent at home to overcome their road journey.
Green Bay Packers: 8-9
Things will look significantly different in Green Bay this fall. Their young offensive core is exciting but also has many unknowns. Getting a challenging slate of road games against some veteran coaches won’t help their confidence.
Home games against the Chiefs, Saints, and Chargers are favorable outcomes, considering how much more difficult those matchups would be on the road. Green Bay starts the year with five winnable games before their bye week, which could set the tone for a more successful season than what we’re even projecting.
Houston Texans: 5-12
It finally felt like the Houston Texans took their rebuild seriously this offseason. Hiring DeMeco Ryans and drafting both C.J. Stroud and Will Anderson Jr. will give the franchise hope and some level of competence. It should also help to have one of the most favorable schedules in the NFL, both in terms of strength and how it’s structured.
Pre-bye week matchups against the Colts, Steelers, and Falcons could be better than facing these teams later in the year. Coming out of the bye to face Carolina, Tampa Bay, and Arizona in a month-stretch will determine how well this Texans team will finish.
Indianapolis Colts: 6-11
The AFC South remains the eyesore of the AFC, but at least we’ll have some fun, young quarterbacks and first-year head coaches to track. The Colts, with Shane Steichen and Anthony Richardson looking to develop with each other, will have the chance to pull some key upsets. Home games against the Steelers, Saints, Buccaneers, Raiders, and Rams look particularly winnable.
Of course, it depends on how much of a learning curve Richardson needs. He’s surrounded by a good defense and a set of playmakers who have varying levels of recent success. With this schedule and Richardson’s upside, the Colts could be a surprise breakout team in 2023.
Jacksonville Jaguars: 9-8
There’s no question the Jacksonville Jaguars are trending in the right direction. However, we can’t overvalue their run at the end of 2022 when projecting forward. This is a better roster than it was last year, but that likely means more consistent performance over a significantly higher upside.
Quarterback Trevor Lawrence will benefit from the addition of wide receiver Calvin Ridley, but some regression for Zay Jones and Evan Engram is likely. With tough home games against the Chiefs, Bengals, 49ers, and Ravens, the Jaguars will be a very good nine-win team that suffers from a challenging schedule.
Kansas City Chiefs: 12-5
It’s futile betting against the Kansas City Chiefs at this point. While they’re unlikely to win every game because they tend to be involved in dramatic outcomes, they’re a powerhouse. Seeing them play the Dolphins in Germany is fun, but it’s a missed opportunity to face off against Tyreek Hill at Arrowhead. Otherwise, it’s hard to have too many takeaways about how their schedule will affect their season much.
Las Vegas Raiders: 5-12
The Las Vegas Raiders seem primed to have a meltdown season after seeing how they finished the 2022 campaign and attacked the 2023 offseason. Swapping out quarterback Derek Carr for Jimmy Garoppolo was futile, and the additions of Jakobi Meyers and Marcus Epps are solid but not enough to move the needle.
A brutal midseason run that includes the Lions, Giants, Dolphins, Jets, and Chiefs comes before the bye week. The Raiders’ season may very well be over by Week 13.
Los Angeles Chargers: 10-7
It’s a make-or-break season for the Los Angeles Chargers in many ways. With Justin Herbert set to cash in soon, head coach Brandon Staley has to prove he can win big games and guide this team to the postseason with roster development. The team is highly talented but has struggled to win in the margins in key moments.
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Road trips against the Patriots and Jets will be their toughest non-divisional away games, so the Chargers have a favorable opportunity there. However, home games against Buffalo, Miami, Baltimore, Detroit, and Dallas will more than make up for that. I’m expecting a Wild Card berth despite the Chargers having one of the harder schedules.
Los Angeles Rams: 6-11
The Los Angeles Rams appear to be one of the teams that seem most likely to throw in the towel if the early part of their season doesn’t go according to plan. With quarterback Matthew Stafford playing terribly before suffering a neck injury in 2022 and a roster that was torn down this offseason, the Rams aren’t particularly good anyway.
Starting the year at Seattle, against San Francisco, and at Cincinnati will be telling. There’s no reprieve on the Rams’ schedule, so they’ll have to come out the gate sharper than most just so they can survive to compete later in the year.
Miami Dolphins: 10-7
Health permitting, the Miami Dolphins offense, also known as a track team, will continue to lap their opposition in 2023. With the additions of defensive coordinator Vic Fangio and cornerback Jalen Ramsey, Miami’s defense should catch up to their star-studded offense and form an incredibly dangerous team.
Of course, quarterback Tua Tagovailoa has to stay healthy. He showed he has franchise QB talent last year before a tough end of the season.
Miami avoids going to Buffalo in the snow and has a favorable post-bye week slate of games. They could finish the season on a strong note, with their Christmas Eve battle against Dallas standing out as a potentially critical matchup.
Minnesota Vikings: 9-8
Everyone except for Minnesota Vikings fans knew last year’s 13-4 record was a farce, but it’s a shame we won’t get to see whether that roster could replicate any of their late-game magic in 2023. The Vikings stripped down that team after an embarrassing playoff loss to the Giants, and they could further reduce their talent if they deal running back Dalvin Cook.
The NFC North will be winnable with or without Cook, but the Vikings can’t overcome the regression in store for them.
New England Patriots: 7-10
Someone in the AFC East will struggle beyond expectations, and it’s hard to imagine it won’t be the New England Patriots. With owner Robert Kraft and head coach Bill Belichick expressing more discontent with each other this offseason than ever before, we might be one more disappointing season away from a breakup. It’s hard to see how Belichick will avoid that fate.
The Patriots are awful to face because they’re tough as nails on defense and rarely lose in the margins. Adding offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien gives Mac Jones some hope of finding success, but it’s undeniable that the Patriots lack the offensive talent of their divisional peers.
New Orleans Saints: 10-7
Many scoffed at the Saints’ addition of Derek Carr this offseason, but it’s important to see how much of an upgrade he is over Andy Dalton and Jameis Winston. Carr, at his best, is an efficient player who rarely produced complete dud performances. Mere competence at quarterback for a Saints offense that has a relatively strong supporting cast is enough for a winning record.
On top of the talent advantage New Orleans should have against each of their divisional foes, the schedule is quite favorable for the Saints. Starting the year with the Titans, Panthers, Packers, and Buccaneers in the first month is a great opportunity to boost their record early. Ending the year against the Rams, Buccaneers, and Falcons, all of whom could be tanking by then, is also a major win.
New York Giants: 9-8
The Giants made real momentum with the way they ended the 2022 season and showed out in the playoffs. Their success locked them into retaining quarterback Daniel Jones, but the franchise did well not to let that be their only move of the offseason. With any luck, the Giants’ supporting cast will be much better this year with Darren Waller, Jalin Hyatt, and Parris Campbell.
The Giants’ schedule is quite balanced. They’ll benefit from several key breaks in between tougher foes, including the Cardinals in Week 2, Commanders in Week 7, Raiders in Week 9, and Rams in Week 17. It’s not an easy schedule at all, though, so we could see regression coming.
New York Jets: 10-7
All eyes will be on Aaron Rodgers’ first season with the New York Jets, and for good reason. The Jets’ defense was fantastic throughout 2022, but the team still sputtered with a six-game losing streak to end the year because the offense was so inept. Rodgers, even if he’s a mediocre version of himself, will be a massive upgrade.
A favorable road schedule can help push the Jets into the AFC East title discussion. Road games against the Cowboys and Browns stand out, but the Jets should be able to hold their own in every contest this season. Their three swing games are against the Chiefs, Chargers, and Eagles at home.
Philadelphia Eagles: 12-5
Even after losing both coordinators and several standout starters in free agency, the Philadelphia Eagles might have the best and deepest roster in the NFL. There’s no reason to think they won’t challenge for the top overall seed in the NFC once again. However, it’s also fair to say they have less depth than last year, and there’s more uncertainty as they break in two new coordinators.
The Eagles’ schedule appears quite favorable. Facing the Dolphins, Bills, and 49ers at home is a godsend. They also face their toughest stretch immediately after their Week 10 bye, allowing their staff to re-tool when it matters the most.
Pittsburgh Steelers: 8-9
Someone in the AFC North has to lose, and the Pittsburgh Steelers are once again lacking in the overall talent discussion. Head coach Mike Tomlin has continued to overcome a less dynamic, star-driven roster in recent years while still pumping out winning seasons, but 2023 looks different. The Browns, Bengals, and Ravens have a lot more talent on the field.
Still, the Steelers will be a tough team to beat with their strong defense and an improving offensive attack. Their early bye week can help them address any major issues in the first five weeks. After the bye, their schedule is manageable until a tough three-game slate to end the season against Cincinnati, at Seattle, and at Baltimore.
San Francisco 49ers: 11-6
The San Francisco 49ers have won at least 10 games in three of the last four years but are still a team of uncertainty. We don’t know who will start at quarterback in Week 1 as Brock Purdy heals from elbow surgery. Backup Trey Lance hasn’t given any reason to feel confident he can be a starting NFL quarterback in his absence.
However, Kyle Shanahan has shown to be an excellent problem-solver throughout his career, and the 49ers have an elite defense. After adding Javon Hargrave from the Eagles, I expect the 49ers to be right in the mix for the top NFC seed.
Seattle Seahawks: 10-7
My top NFC Super Bowl sleeper is the Seattle Seahawks. They’re loaded on offense after adding Jaxon Smith-Njigba and Zach Charbonnet to an offense that finished ninth in scoring last year. More importantly, the Seahawks devoted their top two picks to fixing the defense, brought Bobby Wagner back, and are getting Jamal Adams back from injury.
Seattle’s 2023 schedule has a tough stretch from Week 12 through Week 15, facing the 49ers twice, the Cowboys, and the Eagles. Getting Philadelphia and Cleveland at home is negated by having to travel to Cincinnati, Baltimore, and the New York Giants.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 6-11
It’s hard to be too excited about the 2023 Tampa Bay Buccaneers. While it’s the best supporting cast Baker Mayfield has played with since his early career success in Cleveland, he’s been plagued by his own limitations as a player beyond suffering from bad players around him. The Buccaneers also lost more depth across the roster after trimming salary obligations.
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This team feels ripe for a teardown. Mike Evans and Devin White are ideal trade candidates if the Buccaneers decide to tank for Caleb Williams or Drake Maye. Their schedule may play a big part in that process.
Tennessee Titans: 7-10
For as worried as I am about the lack of depth throughout the Tennessee Titans’ roster, they have a competent group of starters who have already proven they can help this team reach mediocrity. If Ryan Tannehill or Derrick Henry suffers a significant injury, then they’d ideally move toward selling off their assets and starting rookie quarterback Will Levis. But they may not have to do that at all this season.
Starting the year at New Orleans, against the Chargers, at Cleveland, then hosting the Bengals, is a doozy. Things ease up until the final five weeks of the season so there’s room for the Titans to once again be a surprising playoff contender if they can take care of business.
Washington Commanders: 7-10
No team may have a wider range of outcomes this season than the Washington Commanders. They have a strong receiving corps and rebuilt their offensive line for first-year starting quarterback Sam Howell. The defense, which really found its groove in the second half of 2022, should also be better this year with Chase Young healthy and cornerbacks Emmanuel Forbes and Jartavius Martin added in the draft.
If Howell is good, then Washington’s away opponents won’t seem as daunting. Trips to the Patriots, Jets, Seahawks, and Broncos can be incredibly difficult for a young player. If he’s not good, each of those games can be a loss, in addition to home games against the 49ers, Bills, and Dolphins.