EAGAN, Minn. — Fans aren't the only ones anticipating Thursday's 2020 NFL schedule release.
Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman spoke with Twin Cities media members Tuesday and was asked what he first looks forward to finding out when a new season's schedule is unveiled.
"I think everybody gets anxious on, 'Who is the opener? Are you going to be at home? On the road? Who are you playing against?' " Spielman explained. "Everybody gets excited about who the opener is going to be because that's probably the most unpredictable game — not that they're predictable — out of any, because you just don't know [what to expect] the first time you're going out there when it counts."
Vikings.com will be able to unveil the team's 2020 schedule at 6:30 p.m. (CT) Thursday.
In addition to learning about Week 1, Spielman said he looks forward to finding out where "critical matchups" will fall on the calendar.
"Are we going to be on the road, away on prime time again, like most of the time? Are we going to have some home prime-time games?" Spielman explained. "It's kind of interesting to see who is going to be your back-to-back, like you've got a Sunday, and then who is going to be your Thursday game?
"You look at it a bunch of different ways, how it's laid out," he continued. "Are we going to have to go out to the West Coast for two weeks in a row, just different things like that, but it's always fun to see who your opener is."
As a reminder, the Vikings home and road opponents for the 2020 season have been determined, and there are three trips to the Gulf Coast scheduled and only one — albeit a highly familiar one — to the West Coast:
HOME: Bears, Lions, Packers, Falcons, Panthers, Jaguars, Titans, Cowboys
AWAY: Bears, Lions, Packers, Buccaneers, Saints, Colts, Texans, Seahawks
WHERE CAN I WATCH?
"Voice of the Vikings" Paul Allen and Pete Bercich will provide analysis on Vikings.com.
In addition to keeping an eye on Vikings.com and the team's official social media channels at 6:30 p.m. (CT) Thursday, fans also can tune into NFL Network Thursday night at 7 p.m. (CT) for a three-hour Schedule Release '20 special.
The program will break down the upcoming 2020 NFL regular-season schedule division-by-division, analyzing the top matchups and prime-time games.
Along with insight from NFL Network hosts and analysts, Schedule Release '20 will include interviews from the homes of NFL head coaches, general managers and other guests.
Live streaming of NFL Network is available across devices (smartphone, PC, tablet and connected TVs) through the NFL app or NFL.com/watch for subscribers of participating NFL Network providers.
The #VikingsHappyHour Presented by Miller Lite will kick off on Thursday at 6 p.m. (CT) in advance of the schedule release.
The live-streamed social hour will give fans the opportunity to look ahead at the 2020 season and interact with Vikings analysts, players and national broadcast media across Vikings.com, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.
MAKE A DIFFERENCE
The NFL family surpassed $100 million in contributions to COVID relief efforts during the Draft-A-Thon, and the fundraising continues through this week's schedule release.
Fans may continue to contribute, if they are able, by visiting NFL.com/relief to support six nonprofit organizations serving those most in need across the nation.