2024 NFL schedule: Biggest revenge games on slate, including Russ Wilson vs.

The 2024 NFL schedule was finally released on May 15, the latest date it’s been dropped in recent memory. And just like last yearI’m here to give you the best revenge games on the upcoming regular-season slate.

If you’re one of those clowns (like Pete Prisco) who claim revenge games aren’t real, get a clue, man. Not only will I prove it to you in the list of 10 games, but we have a current superstar wide receiver who has gone on record saying revenge games are absolutely a thing.

Amon-Ra St. Brown — the man who lists off every wide receiver drafted ahead of him every day when he wakes up — told our FFT guys that revenge games are absolutely real.

Generally speaking, we like to find non-divisional games to include here, but we’ve made some exceptions below. Enjoy and soak up the spite.

Honorable mentions

Why just honorable mention? Because ordinarily I don’t like to include divisional matchups on this list because these teams play each other multiple times per year and there’s always bad blood. Every player should be amped to go up against a hated division rival. But in this particular case there are two running backs who happened to swap teams this past year — Saquon Barkley and Aaron Jones — that have fairly early season matchups against their old squads.

Barkley has been getting KILLED this offseason by insane Giants fans, and he can viably be miffed because New York never actually paid him despite drafting him second overall. Jones got kicked to the curb by the Packers despite being a fan favorite and lighting up rushing defenses down the stretch to help Green Bay make the playoffs last year. He quickly inked with the Vikings and should be out to crush his old team, Full Favre Style in Week 4 of the season.

Week 1, 8:20 p.m. ET, ESPN

You may be wondering “Whaaaaaaaa” with this one. Well, we’re going to give you a couple reasons: Aaron Rodgers is going to try and get revenge against his Achilles. He’s going to try and get revenge against “Monday Night Football.” He’s going to try and get revenge against Week 1 and — most importantly — he’s actually going back to California to take on the team who passed on him with the first overall pick. Obviously his career ended up better than Alex Smith’s did, maybe in large part because he fell to the Packers, but that wild night in New York during the first round of the draft occurred because the 49ers didn’t draft him. Aaron Rodgers is a very spiteful man who loves to have a chip on his shoulder. I’d be shocked if he still doesn’t hold this against San Francisco.

Week 1, 1 p.m. ET, Fox

The nuances of the revenge game also feature the need to examine fired head coaches, especially when they turn into offensive coordinators, and ESPECIALLY when they head back to their previous job to take on their old team in the first week of the next season. Such is the case with former Falcons head coach Arthur Smith, who took over for the beleaguered Matt Canada as OC in Pittsburgh and immediately gets to remind his old boss why he shouldn’t have been let go. Bonus: He’s doing it with Russell Wilson under center (most likely) and that means we’ll (most likely) see Russ vs. Kirk Cousins, which is actually a rematch of the 2011 B1G Championship Game when Russ took down Cousins. Extra bonus: New Falcons coach Raheem Morris is a protege of Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, so there’s a little friendly juice there.

Week 1, 8:20 p.m. ET, NBC

The NFL typically doesn’t drop a revenge bomb on us out of the gate, but we’re getting one in 2024, with the Ravens going on the road for a rematch of the AFC Championship game. Lamar Jackson and Patrick Mahomes is a beauty anytime it happens, but the Ravens will want to extract revenge against the Kansas City defense for slowing them down and preventing a trip to the Super Bowl. There’s the added bonus of John Harbaugh serving as a protege to Andy Reid, and the back-and-forth that goes with that is still very much existent.

7. Falcons at Vikings

Week 14, 1 p.m. ET, Fox

Kirk Cousins lands on this list for the second time with his return home. Or at least his presumed return! It would be a stunner if Cousins wasn’t still starting for Atlanta this late in the year (barring injury) and if he wasn’t, it might be an even bigger battle of two rookie quarterbacks in Michael Penix and J.J. McCarthy. I don’t know if Cousins will want “revenge” against Minnesota — he said on ESPN following the schedule release he wouldn’t exactly be full of discontent upon his return — but this is still a massive game for the NFC playoff picture this late in the year and I refuse to believe Cousins won’t want to remind his old team what they’re missing with his new arsenal of weapons in Atlanta.

Week 17, 1 p.m. ET, Fox

Not just the Derek Carr Bowl, but also the Dennis Allen Bowl! The Raiders ditched Carr pretty unceremoniously before last offseason and Carr quickly reunited with his old coach in Oakland, who had taken over for Sean Payton in New Orleans. Now the two are firmly on the hot seat, with lots of attention being paid to this Saints roster in 2024. There’s concerns about the offensive line and people wondering just how much of a ceiling New Orleans has. What’s really intriguing is whether Allen and Carr will both be in their respective positions when this game actually happens and if the Raiders are able to stay in the playoff hunt this late into the year.

Week 1, 8:20 p.m. ET, NBC

This beauty of a revenge game already popped up in the playoffs last year when Matthew Stafford returned to Detroit for the first time since being traded to the Rams in exchange for Jared Goff. Goff and Detroit got the better of Stafford and the Rams in Detroit in a really fun playoff game, and both teams should fancy themselves contenders in the NFC this year. Goff and Stafford both have to feel good about where they stand right now, assuming Stafford’s contract gets done. Goff just got PAID by the Lions and he’s clearly a large part of their future, having completely turned the public narrative around on how he’s perceived. But Stafford is going to want to win in Detroit and Goff will want to remind the Rams once again they shouldn’t have let him go. There’s plenty of spice here still. If you didn’t know that, the NFL let you know by putting this game on “Sunday Night Football” in Week 1.

Week 5, 1 p.m. ET, CBS

If it weren’t for the multiple angles below, I’d probably slot the Stefon Diggs revenge game higher, primarily because there is no true revenge like wide receiver revenge. Recent receivers who have gone notably nuclear on their previous team, including Randy Moss (he obliterated the Cowboys as a rookie for not drafting him), Terrell Owens (143 yards and two scores versus the 49ers), Andre Johnson (six catches for 77 yards and two touchdowns versus Houston), Steve Smith (he went off for 135 yards and two scores against Carolina, before saying afterward “I’m 35 years old, and I ran around them boys like they was schoolyard children”), Jarvis Landry (10 catches, 148 yards, two scores versus the Dolphins) and A.J. Brown (eight catches, 119 yards, two scores, got his old boss fired against the Titans), just to name a few famous ones.

Diggs already has one on his resume, even if he had to wait until 2022 to get his revenge game against the Vikings, when he went off for 12 catches and 128 yards in a wild game, albeit a loss. There’s a decent chance Diggs is no longer elite, but I’d be willing to bet he has one more really good season left in the tank and I’ll guarantee he has a big game against the Bills in there.

3. Chargers at Ravens/Harbowl

Week 12, 8:20 p.m. ET, ESPN

The third-ever matchup between Jim Harbaugh and John Harbaugh will take place in 2024, thanks to Jim’s return to the NFL as coach of the Chargers and the fortuitous matchup that ensues. If you want to argue this isn’t “revenge” because Jim and John are brothers and ultimately love each other, that’s fine. But Jim has never beaten his brother and despite winning a college football championship at his alma mater Michigan this past year, he doesn’t have the Super Bowl ring that John owns. Worse news for Jim: John won his Super Bowl against his brother in Super Bowl XLVII (The Blackout Bowl in New Orleans) in a WILD battle. If you follow the Harbaugh Brothers at all, you know their dad Jack used to tell them to go outside and fight it out as kids. If you think this doesn’t mean the world to both guys, especially in a crowded AFC, someone else has it better than you.

2. Steelers at Broncos

Week 2, 4:25 p.m. ET, CBS

Russell Wilson versus Sean Payton? Shoot it into my veins. Russ got cut by the Broncos this offseason and eventually signed with the Steelers on a dirt-cheap, one-year contract. He has all the spite in the world for being publicly embarrassed, even though the Broncos are still paying him roughly $85 million not to play for their team. But if you think he’s the only one absolutely locked in for this matchup, think again. Payton is as vengeful as it comes from a coaching perspective — it’s impossible to forget him mouthing “choke” while making a choking motion against the Falcons during his NFC South days.

This was based out of pure hatred for a division rival. The Broncos and Steelers are not rivals. But after this offseason, Wilson and Payton are — they spent the entire pre- and post-release stretches passive aggressively firing public shots at one another. If you think Russ doesn’t want to light up the Broncos defense you’re crazy. And if you think Payton doesn’t want to make Russ look terrible while simultaneously showcasing rookie Bo Nix you’re just depressingly naive.

1. Chiefs at 49ers

Week 7, 4:25 p.m. ET, Fox

As we said last year, there is absolutely no revenge quite like “Super Bowl Revenge” and the 49ers will get their shot at redemption. This was part of the many early Fox/Tom Brady-on-the-call publicity leaks from this year’s schedule — you can also bank on it being one of the games Fox refused to let the NFL slide into prime time, especially after the bonkers overtime ratings CBS pulled for last year’s Super Bowl matchup. It’s early enough in the season where we should expect full health from both squads.

We saw the 49ers particularly geared up for vengeance against the Eagles in one of our top revenge games from last year. I wouldn’t be surprised if San Francisco circled this matchup as its Regular Season Super Bowl. It’s also the favorite for a Super Bowl matchup, the Chiefs are trying to three-peat and Brady’s connections to both teams (rivalry against Patrick Mahomes, his flirtation with the 49ers in 2023 and his ties to the Bay Area) make this a very juicy matchup indeed.

Leave a Comment