EAGAN, Minn. — The NFL on Tuesday announced the regular season schedule will expand and the preseason will shrink by one game, beginning in 2021.
The Minnesota Vikings and all other NFC teams will visit an additional AFC team (bringing the total of interconference games for each team to five) in the 2021 regular season. All teams with nine road games during the regular season will play one exhibition contest on the road and host two preseason games.
The conferences will alternate the following year, with Minnesota and other NFC teams set to host nine home games in the 2022 regular season.
The expansion from 16 regular-season games to 17 is the first to the slate since 1978 when teams shifted from playing 14 games to 16 in regular seasons. That change also was accompanied by a reduction of preseason games from six to four.
The NFL announced Minnesota's additional regular-season game will be at the Los Angeles Chargers, extending the opportunity for the Vikings to play in SoFi Stadium for the first time. The venue opened in 2020 and is scheduled to host Super Bowl LVI next February.
Additional opponents were determined by the NFL pairing teams from the NFC North and AFC West for 2021 and using the 2020 corresponding order of finish in those divisions to set the matchups.
Vikings 2021 Home Opponents: Bears, Lions, Packers, Rams, Seahawks, Cowboys, Browns and Steelers
Vikings 2021 Road Opponents: Bears, Lions, Packers, Cardinals, 49ers, Panthers, Bengals, Ravens and Chargers
Dates and times will be announced later, and so will preseason opponents.