NEW YORK -- The Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens will open the 2013 season at Denver in the now-traditional Thursday night kickoff game.
The NFL champs usually host the opener, but the Orioles are home Sept. 5 and could not move their game. So $121 million quarterback Joe Flacco and the Ravens were sent to Denver -- to face Peyton Manning and the team they beat in double overtime on their way to the Super Bowl.
Baltimore preferred beginning the season Thursday night on the road rather than at home on Sunday.
Other schedule highlights announced Thursday: Manning returning to Indianapolis on Sunday night, Oct. 20; Manning against younger brother Eli and the Giants in Week 2 at the Meadowlands; and coach Andy Reid returning to Philadelphia with the Chiefs on Thursday night, Sept. 19.
The Browns will open the season under new coach Rob Chudzinski at home and then hit the road against the Super Bowl champions.
Cleveland will host the Miami Dolphins on Sept. 8 at newly named FirstEnergy Stadium.
It's the 14th time in 15 years since the Browns returned to the NFL that they've opened the season at home. Unfortunately, they're 1-12 in home openers.
After facing the Dolphins, the Browns travel to Baltimore to play the Ravens. Last season's champs will visit Cleveland on Nov. 3. The Browns play four of their first six games at home, including three straight against Cincinnati (Sept. 29), Buffalo (Oct. 3) and Detroit (Oct. 13).
The matchup with the Bills is on Thursday night. The archrival Pittsburgh Steelers visit Cleveland on Nov. 24.
The Browns pre-season schedule, with all the games being shown on WKYC-TV, are:
- Thursday, Aug. 8 vs. St. Louis Rams, 8:00 p.m.
- Thursday, Aug. 15 vs. Detroit Lions, 7:30 p.m.
- Saturday, Aug. 24 at Indianapolis Colts, 7:00 p.m.
- Thursday, Aug. 29 at Chicago Bears, 8:00 p.m
The Cleveland Browns regular season schedule:
- Sep 08 MIA @ CLE Cleveland Browns Stadium 1:00 p.m.
- Sep 15 CLE @ BAL M&T Bank Stadium 1:00 p.m.
- Sep 22 CLE @ MIN Mall of America Field 1:00 p.m.
- Sep 29 CIN @ CLE Cleveland Browns Stadium 1:00 p.m.
- Oct 03 BUF @ CLE Cleveland Browns Stadium 8:25 p.m.
- Oct 13 DET @ CLE Cleveland Browns Stadium 1:00 p.m.
- Oct 20 CLE @ GB Lambeau Field 4:25 p.m.
- Oct 27 CLE @ KC Arrowhead Stadium 1:00 p.m.
- Nov 03 BAL @ CLE Cleveland Browns Stadium 4:25 p.m.
- Nov 17 CLE @ CIN Paul Brown Stadium 1:00 p.m.
- Nov 24 PIT @ CLE Cleveland Browns Stadium 1:00 p.m.
- Dec 01 JAC @ CLE Cleveland Browns Stadium 1:00 p.m.
- Dec 08 CLE @ NE Gillette Stadium 1:00 p.m.
- Dec 15 CHI @ CLE Cleveland Browns Stadium 1:00 p.m.
- Dec 22 CLE @ NYJ MetLife Stadium 1:00 p.m.
- Dec 29 CLE @ PIT Heinz Field 1:00 p.m.