DETROIT – The Green Bay Packers don’t know who they’ll be playing in the NFC playoffs in two weeks. But they do know who they’ll be playing in the 2020 regular season.
With the NFL’s scheduling formula, the Packers already were set to play the AFC South and NFC South. The final blanks were filled in on Sunday. As the first-place team in the NFC North, the Packers will play the winner of the NFC East, the Philadelphia Eagles, and the winner of the NFC West, the San Francisco 49ers.
So, here’s how it sets up for the Packers.
Home: Chicago, Detroit, Minnesota, Philadelphia, Carolina, Atlanta, Jacksonville and Tennessee.
Away: Chicago, Detroit, Minnesota, San Francisco, New Orleans, Tampa Bay, Houston and Indianapolis.
That means seven games against teams that will participate in this week’s playoffs: Minnesota, Philadelphia and Tennessee at home, and Minnesota, San Francisco, New Orleans and Houston on the road.
On the other hand, Green Bay will play seven games against teams with losing records: Detroit, Carolina, Atlanta and Jacksonville at home, and Detroit, Tampa Bay and Indianapolis on the road.
The road schedule looks especially challenging, with the 49ers and Saints being among the best teams in the league, the Texans posting back-to-back seasons of 10-plus wins and the Buccaneers winning four straight games late in the season under Bruce Arians. The Packers potentially could play five indoor games with trips to Minnesota, Detroit, New Orleans, Indianapolis and Houston. The past four seasons, Green Bay is 3-7 indoors, though it did win at Minnesota and Detroit to close this season to snap a five-game losing streak.