RENTON — Could the Seahawks be the opponent for Tampa Bay in the first NFL regular-season game in Munich, Germany, next fall?
The answer will come May 4 when the NFL announces the full lineup for its international games. The league announced Thursday that it will reveal the international games then and that the full schedule will be announced May 12.
Opponents have already been set via the league’s scheduling formula.
It was earlier revealed that five teams will serve as hosts for international games — Tampa Bay in Munich, Arizona in Mexico City, and New Orleans, Jacksonville and Green Bay in London.
The Seahawks are an away opponent for Tampa Bay, Arizona and New Orleans, which has led to speculation they could play their second game in the league’s international series, the first coming in 2018 in London against the Raiders. the Seahawks also played Buffalo in Toronto in 2012 in a game the Bills moved there and not an international series game.
There was speculation that Tampa Bay’s opponent will be Kansas City, setting up a Tom Brady-Patrick Mahomes QB matchup for the game at FC Bayern Munich Stadium.
The Seahawks could also be a consideration as they have a strong following in Germany.
And maybe Seahawks general manager John Schneider was just having some fun, but during the team’s pre-draft news conference Thursday, Schneider joked that he and team scouts had heard “every genre of music” being played in highlight films of prospective draftees “so we started with German lessons this morning in there” instead.
Schneider said “it got hard really quick, so we ended up turning it off” and going back to music.
Said Carroll of listening to German lessons: “Just trying to get a little bit better with our teammates.”
The Seahawks have one player on their roster born in Germany in linebacker Aaron Donkor. Donkor, a native of Goettingen, Germany, was allocated to Seattle last year as part of the league’s International Player Pathway Program and spent last season on the practice squad and was re-signed to a futures contract after the season.
A tweet from the U.S. Consulate in Germany earlier this week indicated Tampa Bay’s game in Munich will be played Nov. 13.
When the league increased the schedule to 17 games last year it also announced that up to four teams in the conference getting nine home games, which this year is the NFC, will be designated as home teams for international games.
That means that if it doesn’t happen this year, odds are the Seahawks will sooner rather than later play another international game.
Could the Seahawks host Denver on a Thursday?
The NFL also announced that the teams who will play in the first Thursday Night Football Game on Amazon Prime Video will be revealed during the first round of the draft Thursday. That game will kick off the second week of the league season Sept. 15.
There has been some speculation the Sept. 15 game could be the Seahawks’ home game against Denver, which would be Russell Wilson’s return. That game is widely expected to be played during one of the NFL’s marquee TV time slots.