Four Pro Bowl quarterbacks await the Chiefs over the first five weeks of the 2012 season and none are named Peyton Manning. It’s the type of schedule that ensures Kansas City can’t afford the slow start it experienced to begin last season.
Up first for the Chiefs is a season opener against Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons at Arrowhead Stadium. The game marks the third consecutive season Kansas City has opened its schedule at home and will feature the return of TE Tony Gonzalez.
Kansas City and Atlanta haven’t met since Gonzalez was traded to the Falcons following the 2008 season.
Following the opener with Atlanta, Kansas City travels to Buffalo before facing off against Drew Brees, Philip Rivers and Joe Flacco in consecutive weeks.
A pair of primetime games against Pro Bowl quarterbacks also highlight Kansas City’s 2012 schedule with matchups against the Chargers and Steelers on national television.
The Chiefs will go on the road for both primetime settings beginning with a Week 9 Thursday night game in San Diego. It’s the first time Kansas City will play on Thursday Night Football since hosting NFL Network’s first-ever live broadcast on Thanksgiving Night in 2006.
Kansas City will then have 10 days to prepare for a Monday Night Football meeting with Ben Roethlisberger and the Steelers in Pittsburgh.
Speaking of Pro Bowl quarterbacks, the Chiefs won’t face the Peyton Manning-led Denver Broncos until Week 12.
Kansas City is also set to face Pro Bowlers Andy Dalton and Cam Newton in 2012.
Chiefs 2012 Regular Season Schedule
|Week 1||Sun. September 9th|
|vs. ATLANTA||12:00 PM (CST)|
Atlanta visits Arrowhead for the first time since a 56-10 loss to the Chiefs in 2004. Tony Gonzalez makes his Arrowhead return and the Chiefs open the regular season at home for the third consecutive year.
|Week 2||Sun. September 16th|
|at Buffalo||12:00 PM (CST)|
Chiefs seek revenge from last year’s 41-7 Opening Day loss. A scheduling rarity with two non-division teams meeting for the fifth consecutive season.
|Week 3||Sun. September 23rd|
|at New Orleans||12:00 PM (CST)|
Kansas City faces the second of two NFC South playoff teams from 2011. New Orleans will be without interim head coach Joe Vitt, who will be serving a six-game suspension.
|Week 4||Sun. September 30th|
|vs. SAN DIEGO||12:00 PM (CST)|
San Diego visits Arrowhead Stadium for the Chiefs’ first division game of 2012.
|Week 5||Sun. October 7th|
|vs. BALTIMORE||12:00 PM (CST)|
Rematch of the 2010 AFC Wild Card Playoff Game at Arrowhead Stadium. Ravens QB Joe Flacco will be the fourth Pro Bowl quarterback Kansas City is scheduled to face over the first five weeks.
|Week 6||Sun. October 14th|
|at Tampa Bay||12:00 PM (CST)|
Buccaneers QB Josh Freeman, who grew up in the Kansas City area, has never squared off against his hometown team.
|Week 7||BYE WEEK|
Veteran players will like this year’s bye week placement. A near perfect spot to split the season into two parts.
|Week 8||Sun. October 28th|
|vs. OAKLAND||3:05 PM (CST)|
Two weeks to prepare for a rivalry game and the start of a pivotal stretch in the schedule.
|Week 9||Thurs. November 1st|
|at San Diego (NFLN)||7:20 PM (CST)|
Chiefs play on Thursday Night Football for the first time in five seasons. Third consecutive season the Chiefs and Chargers have met on primetime television.
|Week 10||Mon. November 12th|
|at Pittsburgh (MNF)||7:30 PM (CST)|
A miniature bye week separates nationally televised games with the Chiefs getting 10 days to prepare for a second-straight primetime game. Second year in a row the Chiefs and Steelers have met on primetime television. Storylines, storylines and more storylines.
|Week 11||Sun. November 18th|
|vs. CINCINNATI||12:00 PM (CST)|
Another Pro Bowl quarterback waits in Cincinnati’s Andy Dalton.
|Week 12||Sun. November 25th|
|vs. DENVER||12:00 PM (CST)|
The first meeting against Peyton Manning and the Broncos occurs at Arrowhead.
|Week 13||Sun. December 2nd|
|vs. CAROLINA||12:00 PM (CST)|
Cam Newton and the Panthers will be a preseason favorite as a playoff sleeper in 2012.
|Week 14||Sun. December 9th|
|at Cleveland||12:00 PM (CST)|
A homecoming of sorts for Romeo Crennel.
|Week 15||Sun. December 16th|
|at Oakland||3:15 PM (CST)|
Three of Kansas City’s final four games are on the road. None may be more important than this division matchup.
|Week 16||Sun. December 23rd|
|vs. INDIANAPOLIS||12:00 PM (CST)|
Andrew Luck at Arrowhead Stadium in the middle of winter is definitely a welcome to the NFL moment.
|Week 17||Sun. December 30th|
|at Denver||3:15 PM (CST)|
Sets the stage for what could be a huge season finale.