For the first time since 2001, the New England Patriots won't have quarterback Tom Brady under center for their season opener on Sunday due to his four–game suspension.
Third–year pro Jimmy Garappolo will start in his place for New England against Arizona, led by quarterback Carson Palmer, who threw for 4,671 yards and 35 touchdowns last season. Arizona had the top–ranked offense in the NFL last season, averaging 408.3 yards per game. Running back David Johnson was a large part of that success, and will look to build off his strong rookie campaign.
The high-flying Cardinals defense, led by cornerback Patrick Peterson, should provide a stiff test for Garappolo and the Patriots offense. Cardinals defensive end Chandler Jones, who the Patriots traded to Arizona during the off–season, had 12.5 sacks last season and should be a force for his new team.
The New England defense is led by linebacker Jamie Collins, who led the team in tackles last season with 89.
Both teams had their 2015 seasons end in their league's conference championship game.
How to watch
Details for Sunday night's game are below.
Upcoming games (all times ET)
Sept. 11: at Arizona (8:30 p.m.)
Sept. 18: vs. Miami (1 p.m.)
Sept. 22: vs. Houston (8:25 p.m.)
Oct. 2: vs. Buffalo (1 p.m.)
Oct. 10: at Cleveland (1 p.m.)
Sept. 11: vs. New England (8:30 p.m.)
Sept. 18: vs. Tampa Bay (4:25 p.m.)
Sept. 25: at Buffalo (1 p.m.)
Oct. 2: vs. Los Angeles (4:25 p.m.)
Oct. 6: at San Francisco (8:25 p.m.)