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Marquee matchups line New Orleans Saints schedule in 2020

Sept. 13 and Nov. 8.

Those are the dates you were waiting for, right? The dates when the New Orleans Saints play Tampa Bay, in the regular-season opener at Mercedes-Benz Superdome and Monday night at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla., respectively. The dates when the two of the most productive quarterbacks in NFL history – New Orleans' Drew Brees is the all-time leader in passing yards and touchdowns, Tampa Bay's Tom Brady is the all-time leader in victories and Super Bowl wins, and is second overall in passing yards and touchdowns – lead their teams against each other.

No? Gotta be December 20, then, because that's when the Saints receive a visit from the Kansas City Chiefs, the reigning Super Bowl champions, and quarterback Pat Mahomes, who has both hands grasping the best-player-in-the-game claim.

Still wrong? How 'bout this: Christmas Day, in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The first Christmas game in franchise history, against the Vikings, who have Grinch-ed the Saints in the postseason in two of the previous three years.

The New Orleans Saints have announced their schedule for the 2020 season. Take a look at the NFL quarterbacks that Drew Brees will go head-to-head against in the regular season.

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New Orleans Saints

If those aren't enticing enough, there still likely exists a Saints game this season that will serve as a must-see for New Orleans' fans.

The Saints' schedule, released on Thursday evening, features four nationally televised, prime-time games (two on Sunday night and two on Monday night), the Christmas date with the Vikings, a road trip to Las Vegas to play the Raiders in their new stadium, and the always-anticipated home-and-away games against NFC South Division rival Atlanta.

The Raiders game, a Monday night affair Sept. 21, begins the quick procession of four nationally televised games in eight weeks. After the trip to Las Vegas, New Orleans's national lineup includes home against the Packers on Sept. 27 (Sunday night), home against the Chargers on Oct. 12 (Monday night) and away against Tampa Bay on Nov. 8 (Sunday night).

And while the Saints will be moved away from Thanksgiving – New Orleans beat Atlanta in prime time the previous two Thanksgiving days – they will slot into a Friday afternoon game against Minnesota on Christmas, the fifth time the Saints will have played the Vikings, including playoffs, since 2017.

But, even then, that marquee matchup will be preceded by another five days earlier, when New Orleans hosts Super Bowl champion Kansas City. The Chiefs set an NFL record by posting three 10-plus point comebacks in the playoffs en route to beating San Francisco in Super Bowl LIV.

And speaking of San Francisco: The 49ers, the reigning NFC champs who won a 48-46 shootout against the Saints last season in the Superdome – a victory that proved pivotal as San Francisco (13-3 in the regular season) went on to claim the No. 1 seed in the NFC over the Saints (13-3) – will return to the Superdome on Nov. 15.

The Niners will return minus receiver Emmanuel Sanders , who gave the Saints fits (seven catches for 157 yards and a touchdown, and a 35-yard touchdown pass) during the victory last season; Sanders joined the Saints as an unrestricted free agent.

This season's bye week for New Orleans falls on Week 6 (Oct 18), following the Monday night game against the Chargers and preceding their first NFC South Division game of the season, against Carolina in the Superdome on Oct. 25.

Game against Atlanta, on Nov. 22 (home) and Dec. 6 (Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta) will sandwich a road game against Denver, on Nov. 29. New Orleans split the season series with the Falcons last season, with each team winning on the road.

The New Orleans Saints have announced their schedule for the 2020 season. Take a look at the NFL head coaches that Sean Payton will go head-to-head against in the regular season.

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New Orleans Saints

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