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Champion Pats kick off season vs. Steelers

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The New England Patriots will begin defense of their Super Bowl title when they host the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sept. 10 in a Thursday night game that will open the 2015 NFL season.

The NFL announced the full NFL schedule Tuesday, and it begins with Patriots quarterback Tom Brady facing off against Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.

The first Monday of the season will feature an NFL doubleheader on Sept. 14. The new-look Philadelphia Eagles, with running back DeMarco Murray in the backfield and perhaps Sam Bradford at quarterback, with travel to Atlanta to play the Falcons.

Also that night, the San Francisco 49ers, with new coach Jim Tomsula on the sideline, will host the Minnesota Vikings, who may or may not feature running back Adrian Peterson.

The Thanksgiving showcase will have marquee appeal.

The Green Bay Packers will host the Chicago Bears that day, with the Packers scheduled to retire Brett Favre’s No. 4 at halftime.

Also that day, the Cowboys will host the Carolina Panthers with recent Dallas acquisition Greg Hardy going against his former teammates.

The Detroit Lions complete the tripleheader with a home game against the Eagles.

In Week 2, the Packers host the Seattle Seahawks in a rematch of their NFC Championship Game, and new Bears coach John Fox will face his former team when Chicago hosts the Denver Broncos in Week 11.

The Eagles, Lions, San Diego Chargers, New York Giants, Baltimore Ravens and Cincinnati Bengals each play twice on Monday night in 2015, while the Cowboys, Seahawks and Broncos will be part of the featured Sunday night game three times apiece.

Ten teams are tied for the most prime-time games with five. The list consists of the Patriots, Seahawks, Ravens, Cowboys, Giants, Steelers, Packers, Broncos, Eagles and Indianapolis Colts.


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