The National Football League unveiled its complete schedule for the 2021 season on Wednesday, with the Los Angeles Chargers opening the regular season on Sunday, Sept. 12 at Washington. The Bolts will open SoFi Stadium to fans for the first time in Week 2 against the Dallas Cowboys.
Los Angeles is slated to host three prime time contests for the first time since playing five such games at home in 2008, with the Bolts going 4-1 in those matchups. The Chargers close out the season at Las Vegas, marking the second-straight year — and 14th time ever — the team has the season opener and finale on the road.
In conjunction with the schedule release, the Chargers will hold an exclusive presale of select single-game tickets for Season Ticket Members from 4:45 pm – 7:00 pm PT. Public on-sale of select single-game tickets begins at 8:00 pm PT on Chargers.com.
With a record of 34-27 in season openers, the Chargers face off with Washington in an opener for the third time in history and the first since a 30-3 victory to kick off the 2001 season. Los Angeles has won the last two season openers and has won four of the last five matchups in the series with Washington. The game marks just the second season opener on the road for the Bolts against an NFC squad in the last 30 years.
Los Angeles will safely welcome fans to SoFi Stadium for the first time in the regular season in Week 2 against Dallas, the club's second home opener in history against the Cowboys. The Bolts look to build on their three-game winning streak against the Cowboys, having most recently defeated Dallas at AT&T Stadium on Thanksgiving Day of 2017.
Week 3 features Los Angeles' first divisional matchup of the season, with the Bolts traveling to Kansas City. The game will be the 50th bout ever between the two teams at the newly-named GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium. The Bolts' win in Week 17 last year in the finale of quarterback Justin Herbert's record-breaking Offensive Rookie of the Year campaign gave them two victories at Kansas City over the last three seasons.
One week later, the Chargers make their prime time debut at SoFi Stadium, hosting the Raiders on ESPN's Monday Night Football for the first time since a 22-14 victory in 2012. The 2021 season will mark the third-straight year for Los Angeles with a prime-time matchup against the Raiders. Last year on Thursday Night Football, Los Angeles mounted a second-half comeback victory at Las Vegas that Justin Herbert capped with a game-winning rushing touchdown in overtime.
The Chargers then square off with a pair of AFC North opponents leading into the bye week, hosting Cleveland in Week 5 before flying across the country to play at Baltimore. Los Angeles is 17-9-1 all-time against the Browns, including 8-4 when hosting Cleveland. The Chargers last played at Baltimore in the 2018 postseason, winning the AFC Wild Card matchup after the Bolts defense posted seven sacks and registered three takeaways.
Los Angeles has its bye in Week 7, the first time since 2012 that the Bolts have a scheduled bye prior to the midway point of a season (not counting 2020's rescheduled Week 6 bye). The Chargers return home after the bye to host New England before making another cross-country flight to Philadelphia. The Nov. 7 matchup will be the first for the Bolts in the City of Brotherly Love since a 2013 three-point win.
In Week 10, the Chargers play host to Minnesota in the first year of the expanded, 17-game schedule format. Los Angeles then hosts its second prime-time game of the year, this time against Pittsburgh on Sunday Night Football. The Bolts won a road Sunday Night matchup against the Steelers in 2018, coming back from a 16-point deficit in the second half to win, 33-30.
The Bolts kick off the first of two consecutive road game in Denver on Nov. 28 before heading to Cincinnati for the second time in as many seasons. Los Angeles won the 2020 season opener against the Bengals, 16-13, and holds a 21-14 all-time advantage in the regular-season series. The Chargers then return home in Week 14, looking to extend their four-game winning streak against the New York Giants.
Los Angeles will showcase SoFi Stadium — host site of Super Bowl LVI — for a national audience in prime time for the third time of the season on Thursday Night Football against division-rival Kansas City. It's the fourth matchup between the teams on a Thursday, with the Chargers winning each of the last two bouts to hold a 2-1 advantage.
For the only time in 2021, the Chargers will head to the Lone Star State in Week 16 for the eighth-ever matchup with the Houston Texans. Los Angeles has a 5-2 advantage in the all-time series, including a 3-0 record when playing on the road.
Los Angeles closes out the home schedule by hosting Denver in Week 17 on Sunday, Jan. 2. The Chargers also faced the Broncos in last season's home finale, defeating Denver 19-16. The Bolts have a home record of 35-26 against Denver, scoring at least 20 points in 10 of the last 15 matchups.
The regular season concludes at Allegiant Stadium with the Bolts facing the Raiders on Sunday, Jan. 9. The Chargers look to win at Las Vegas for the second-straight season after last year's come-from-behind overtime victory. It's the first Bolts season finale against the Raiders since posting a 30-10 win at home in 2017.
In addition to the 2021 regular-season schedule announcement, Los Angeles' preseason opponents have also been finalized with the team slated to play three NFC West teams. The Bolts open the preseason as the road team against the Rams at SoFi Stadium for the 38th preseason meeting between the teams. The Chargers won the last preseason matchup with the Rams at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in 2017, 21-19, and hold a 19-18 all-time advantage in the preseason.
The Bolts host San Francisco — the Chargers' most frequent preseason opponent — in Week 2 of the preseason for the first time since 2016. Los Angeles has posted 22 wins against the 49ers, the team's most wins against a single preseason opponent, and is riding a two-game winning streak.
Los Angeles heads north to face Seattle for the third and final preseason game. The Bolts have squared off against the Seahawks 17 times in the preseason. The matchup marks the first preseason game between the two to take place in the Pacific Northwest since 2014.
Take a detailed look at who the Bolts will face in the 2021 season!!
- at Washington, Sun., Sept. 12, 10:00 a.m. PT (CBS) — Winners in four of the last five matchups in the series with Washington, the Chargers head to the Nation's capital for the first time since 2013. Every game in the series since 1980 has seen the Bolts top 20 points scored, including the 17-point home victory in 2017 that saw the Los Angeles offense sport a 300-yard passer and a pair of 100-yard receivers.
- vs. Dallas, Sun., Sept. 19, 1:25 p.m. PT (CBS) — Los Angeles will host the Cowboys for the first time since 2013, when the Bolts turned in a nine-point win in Week 4. The Bolts are riding a three-game winning streak in the series, most recently winning by 22 points in Dallas on Thanksgiving in 2017. That game saw four-time Pro Bowl wide receiver Keenan Allen register a touchdown and 172 yards on 11 catches — the most receptions and second-most receiving yards by any player in history against the Cowboys on Thanksgiving.
- at Kansas City, Sun., Sept. 26, 10:00 a.m. PT (CBS) — Justin Herbert put the final stamp on his Rookie of the Year campaign in the season-finale win at Kansas City last year, throwing for 300 yards and three touchdowns to total a 134.1 passer rating. The victory gave the Chargers two wins against the Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium in the last three seasons. Six of the past 11 games at Kansas City have been decided by seven or fewer points.
- vs. Las Vegas, Mon., Oct. 4, 5:15 p.m. PT (ESPN) — The Chargers have won 12 of the past 18 home contests against the Raiders, scoring 20-plus points in all but five of those matchups. The Bolts ran off a streak of seven-straight home wins against the division rival from 2003-09. The Monday Night Football matchup is the first such game against the Raiders since a 22-14 home win in 2012 and the third prime-time game between the teams in as many seasons.
- vs. Cleveland, Sun., Sept. 10, 1:05 p.m. PT (CBS) — Winners of 12 of the last 16 matchups with Cleveland, the Chargers hold a 17-9-1 advantage in the regular-season series against the Browns. The Bolts have won each home game in the series since 1995 and are also undefeated in all 12 matchups when scoring 25-plus points against the Browns.
- at Baltimore, Sun., Oct. 17, 10:00 a.m. PT (CBS) — The Week 6 matchup against the Ravens will mark just the 13th regular-season meeting between the teams, with Baltimore holding a 7-5 advantage in the series. The Chargers beat the Ravens in the 2018 AFC Wild Card matchup, 23-17, after the defense posted a postseason franchise-record-tying seven sacks.
- vs. New England, Sun., Oct. 31, 1:05 p.m. PT (CBS) — Los Angeles will host New England for the second-straight season, marking the first back-to-back seasons with matchups between the teams since 2010-11. New England has a 3-2 advantage in the last five Chargers home games in the series. The Bolts defeated the Patriots for the 1963 AFL title in a 41-point rout that saw running back Keith Lincoln post pro football's lone postseason performance with 200 rushing yards and 100 receiving yards.
- at Philadelphia, Sun., Nov. 7, 1:05 p.m. PT (CBS) — With an all-time record of 7-5 (.583) against the Eagles, the Bolts play in the City of Brotherly Love for the first time since a three-point win in 2013. Of the 12 matchups in series history between the teams, 10 were decided by one score, including the last four. The Chargers hold a 6-1 mark all-time against the Eagles when scoring at least 20 points.
- vs. Minnesota, Sun., Nov. 14, 1:05 p.m. PT (FOX) — The Week 10 matchup will mark only the fourth home game for the Bolts against Minnesota since 1981. The series record with the Vikings is tied at 6-7, but the Chargers hold a 3-2 advantage when playing at home. Los Angeles has scored 24 points or more in four of the five home matchups against Minnesota.
- vs. Pittsburgh, Sun., Nov. 21, 5:20 p.m. PT (NBC) — In November, the Chargers play Pittsburgh for the 32nd matchup in history. The Steelers hold a 23-8 advantage in the series, but the teams have split the last four bouts. Each of the last four games have been decided by seven or fewer points, including the 2018 Sunday Night Football win by three points that saw the Bolts overcome a 16-point deficit in the second half.
- at Denver, Sun., Nov. 28, 1:05 p.m. PT (CBS) — Along with a 14-point victory in the 2018 regular-season finale, Los Angeles looks to win in Denver for the second time in four seasons. Nine of the last 11 matchups in the Mile High City have been decided by one score, including five of them by less than seven points.
- at Cincinnati, Sun., Dec. 5, 10:00 a.m. PT (FOX) — The game will mark the second matchup between the Chargers and Bengals in as many seasons, as Los Angeles won in the season opener at Cincinnati last season, 16-13. The Week 1 contest brought the Bolts to a 21-14 record against the Bengals, including 10-7 on the road. The Bolts clinched the 2009 AFC West title with a 27-24 Week 15 win over Cincinnati. The teams have split a pair of postseason matchups, most recently a Chargers 27-10 victory in the 2013 AFC Wild Card round.
- vs. New York Giants, Sun., Dec. 12, 1:05 p.m. PT (FOX) — The December matchup with the Giants marks the 13th in history, with the Bolts sporting a 7-5 advantage. The Chargers are riding a four-game winning streak in the series, winning by an average of 12 points in those games. When hosting New York in the last 20 seasons, the Bolts hold a 2-0 record, topping 35 points in each matchup.
- vs. Kansas City, Thurs., Dec. 16, 5:20 p.m. PT (FOX/NFL NETWORK/AMAZON) — The Chargers have won nine of the past 17 home games against the Chiefs, with an all-time regular-season home record of 31-28-1. The Bolts have played the Chiefs three times on Thursday, holding a 2-1 advantage in those games. In 1993, The Chargers hosted an AFC Wild Card matchup against the Chiefs, a 17-0 victory for the Bolts in the only postseason showdown with Kansas City.
- at Houston, Sun., Dec. 26, 10:00 a.m. PT (CBS) — The Week 16 matchup will be just the eighth between the two teams. A 5-2 record (.714 pct.) against Houston marks Los Angeles' second-best winning percentage against any NFL team. The Bolts have eclipsed 20 points in every game against the Texans. Each of the past four contests in the series have been decided by one score or less.
- vs. Denver, Sun., Jan. 2, 1:05 p.m. PT (CBS) — The Bolts hold a 35-26 regular-season home record against Denver. In the 2020 home finale, Los Angeles beat Denver, 19-16, as quarterback Justin Herbert set the all-time rookie record for passing touchdowns in a season. The Chargers have posted 20-plus points in 10 of the past 15 home contests against the Broncos, including three of the last five.
- at Las Vegas, Sun., Jan. 9, 1:25 p.m. PT (CBS) — After a come-from-behind overtime victory on Thursday Night Football last year, Los Angeles has won 12 of the past 17 games against the Raiders on the road, including three of the last four. Nine of the past 12 road games against the Raiders have been decided by one score, including a pair of overtime contests.
ADDITIONAL SCHEDULE NOTES
- Season Opener Notes — The Bolts open the season on the road against Washington, the third time the teams will square off in a season opener. The Chargers and Washington have split both previous matchups, with the Chargers winning most recently in a home game to open the 2001 season, 30-3. It's the first season opener for the Bolts at Washington since 1973. The Chargers have a 34-27 record in season openers, including a 17-18 mark when the season-opening contest is played on the road.
- Season Finale Notes — Los Angeles closes the season at Las Vegas, marking the 14th season finale against the Raiders and the seventh to take place on the road. The Chargers have won the last five season finale matchups with the Raiders. The Bolts have closed the season on the road 26 times, going 10-16 in those games. Los Angeles has an all-time regular-season finale record of 31-30.
- Bye Week Notes — The Chargers have the bye week in Week 7 for the fifth time since the open date was re-instituted into NFL schedules in 1990. It will be the first time in history that Los Angeles plays against New England following the bye. Since being re-instituted in 1990, the Chargers have gone 15-16 in games following the bye week.
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