A Thursday night home season opener against Green Bay, an early Super Bowl rematch with Denver and a Thanksgiving Day game at San Francisco highlight the Seahawks’ 2014 regular-season schedule, announced Wednesday by the NFL.
Seattle’s schedule also features a Monday night game at Washington as well as a Sunday night contest at Arizona. In all, the Seahawks will have four nationally televised contests in prime time, matching their total of 2013, though the season opener will be the only one played at home. More prime-time games could be added later under the NFL’s flex scheduling policy.
Some had thought that the NFL might schedule the rival 49ers for the Thursday night season opener traditionally hosted by the defending Super Bowl champ.
Instead, Green Bay will return to Seattle on Sept. 4 as Seattle opens defense of its Super Bowl title. It will be the first visit to Seattle for Green Bay since the infamous Monday night game in 2012 when the Seahawks beat the Packers 14-12 on a controversial last-play touchdown reception by Golden Tate.
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Two weeks later, on Sept. 21, the Seahawks will host the Broncos in a rematch of Seattle’s 43-8 Super Bowl win over Denver on Feb. 2. The same teams will also play in Denver to open the preseason on Aug. 7.
Seattle will have to wait awhile to face rival San Francisco, with the first of two meetings not arriving until Nov. 27, a 5:30 p.m. game on Thanksgiving Day at the 49ers’ new Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara. The teams will then play again 2½ weeks later Dec. 14 in Seattle.
In all, Seattle will play seven games against teams that made the playoffs in 2013. The combined record of Seattle’s opponents a year ago was 143-112-1, a .561 winning percentage that makes the schedule the sixth-toughest in the NFL.
The schedule includes a particularly tough stretch in the second half. Seattle will have four of six games on the road, all against teams with 10 or more wins a year ago — Kansas City, San Francisco, Philadelphia and Arizona.
Seattle also gets a bye in Week 4, its earliest since 2008. Teams often prefer to have byes later in the year, when the week off is more beneficial to help players heal and rest, and at least one Seahawk player took to Twitter to express his disappointment.
“How they kill us with a week 4 bye. Thought we won the superbowl! #nolove,’’ Tweeted Seattle defensive end Bruce Irvin.
Seattle’s only Monday night game comes Oct. 6 at Washington.
As it did a year ago, Seattle will end the season playing its NFC West foes in the final three games, including the finale against the Rams at CenturyLink Field.
The opponents are set via an NFL formula that this year had every team in the NFC West playing against each team in the NFC East and the AFC West. By virtue of winning the NFC West, Seattle is also playing at Carolina, the NFC South winner a year ago, and hosting the Packers, the NFC Central winner. And in a quirk of that formula, this will be the third straight season the Seahawks are playing at Carolina.
Seattle has had 95 straight sellouts at CenturyLink Field. The team last year had a 98 percent season-ticket renewal rate and there may be few available this year. Fans can pay $100 to join the Blue Pride Notification list to be alerted when season tickets become available. The money is not refundable but will be put toward the purchase of season tickets when they become available. What the team calls “a limited’’ number of single-game tickets will go on sale this summer.
• Seattle senior personnel executive Scot McCloughan is leaving the team for personal reasons, a league source told The Seattle Times. McCloughan was considered general manager’s John Schneider’s top aide and a reputable personnel man.
|2014 Seahawks schedule|
|Seattle has a bye in Week 4 of the season.|
|Sept. 4||Green Bay||5:30 p.m.||Ch. 5|
|Sept. 14||at San Diego||1:05 p.m.||Ch. 13|
|Sept. 21||Denver||1:25 p.m.||Ch. 7|
|Oct. 6||at Washington||5:30 p.m.||ESPN|
|Oct. 12||Dallas||1:25 p.m.||Ch. 13|
|Oct. 19||at St. Louis||10 a.m.||Ch. 13|
|Oct. 26||at Carolina||10 a.m.||Ch. 13|
|Nov. 2||Oakland||1:25 p.m.||Ch. 7|
|Nov. 9||N.Y. Giants||1:25 p.m.||Ch. 13|
|Nov. 16||at Kansas City||10 a.m.||Ch. 13|
|Nov. 23||Arizona||1:05 p.m.||Ch. 13|
|Nov. 27||at San Francisco||5:30 p.m.||Ch. 5|
|Dec. 7||at Philadelphia||1:25 p.m.||Ch. 13|
|Dec. 14||San Francisco||1:25 p.m.||Ch. 13|
|Dec. 21||at Arizona||5:30 p.m.||Ch. 5|
|Dec. 28||St. Louis||1:25 p.m.||Ch. 13|