Want a fun way to spend an hour or so? Watch these 2019 schedule-release videos posted Wednesday evening by NFL teams.
A few squads got nicely creative with their efforts last year, which only served to raise a bar that many more cleared this year in highly entertaining fashion. To their enormous credit, several teams took the opportunity to throw some shade at opponents, with the Jaguars going the furthest in that regard.
As part of an exceedingly watchable parody of early infomercials — many other teams also harked back to pop-culture touchstones of recent decades — Jacksonville kicker Josh Lambo played a smooth-talking host who introduced as-seen-on-TV products related to each upcoming opponent. Along the way, the Jags tossed out these jabs:
- An inside-ish joke about Titans fans’ supposed affinity for mayonnaise
- A shot at the Broncos’ trade for former Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco
- The sartorial choices of Panthers quarterback Cam Newton
- The “butt fumble" by former Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez
- A banner joke at the expense of the “2014 AFC Finalist” Colts
- A 28-3 reference at the Falcons’ expense
- And … too many other solid troll jobs to reasonably list here. Honestly, the video is phenomenal, so just watch it, already!
The Bills also get high marks for putting together a faux-dating app that not only enabled snarky comments about their 2019 opponents but also allowed for a few drive-by shots at others not even on the schedule but not exactly beloved by Buffalo fans, such as Lions Coach Matt Patricia, Jaguars Coach Doug Marrone and Raiders wide receiver (and noted non-Bill) Antonio Brown. Among those on the slate who took some ribbing were the Ravens, Jets running back Le’Veon Bell and Giants quarterback Eli Manning (and his famous Face).
The Chargers took things in a terrific direction, using stock footage to poke gentle, somewhat absurdist fun at their 2019 foes. L.A.'s video also gets special marks for alluding to the Chiefs as the “Chefs” and for its soundtrack, a groovy version of the old “Monday Night Football” theme.
The Falcons were one of the three teams, along with the Redskins and Texans, to pay homage to the iconic “Game of Thrones” title sequence, but Atlanta had the best version (although Washington-area residents should enjoy the Redskins’ use of local scenery). The Falcons could not resist giving the archrival Saints the business — nor should they have — working in “Aints” imagery as well as a fantastic reenactment of the postseason no-call after a Ram plowed into a New Orleans player.
The Vikings and Giants came closest to outright roasting their opponents, although the former team still couldn’t help but go “Minnesota nice” with an assortment of haikus that rarely had anything truly unpleasant to say about their foes. Meanwhile, New York brought in comedian Tracy Morgan, but even he appeared to mostly pull his punches while employing a TV-show theme, including a “Mr. Bill” reference that should please hardcore “Saturday Night Live” fans.
Teams whose videos were less focused on opponents but still delightfully wacky included: the Patriots (bad lip reading), the Ravens (old monster-truck ads), the Colts (Andrew Luck reads factoids about opponents’ cities), the Cowboys (ASMR sounds with Amari Cooper), the Steelers (Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood), the Browns (1990s technology) and the Lions (“The Office” GIFs).
Other teams with commendably creative efforts included the Chiefs, who used their 60th season as a peg for enjoyable historical footage, and the Raiders, who did the same thing but better, particularly with their excellent use of Coach Jon Gruden, back in affable football-analyst mode. The Titans trotted out country music artists to announce their opponents, the Eagles used all sorts of Philly-related luminaries, the Saints had the Rebirth Brass Band playing over vibrant scenes from New Orleans and the Rams went with players and coaches reacting to a phone call from an NFL official, who listed their schedule.
Then there were the squads who went with an old-school video-game theme. The Jets and Panthers did it best, while the Packers’ Pac-Man video lagged well behind, with the Seahawks landing somewhere in the middle.
Finally, a few teams trotted out videos that were fairly conventional, at least in comparison to the ones mentioned above. Okay, 49ers (who barely even seemed to try), Bears, Bengals, Broncos, Buccaneers, Cardinals and Dolphins, you have a year to step up your respective games.
Team schedule-release videos not shown above are listed below, in alphabetical order:
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