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Buffalo Bills' schedule 2020: Young team will be tested in prime time

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The Bills' biggest can't-miss game on the 2020 schedule (0:59)

Marcel Louis-Jacques notes the Bills' heavy presence in primetime in 2020, with none bigger than a Thursday night game against the Chiefs in Week 6. (0:59)

The Buffalo Bills' schedule for 2020 was released Thursday.

The regular season kicks off with the Houston Texans visiting the Kansas City Chiefs on Thursday, Sept. 10 (8:20 p.m. ET, NBC). The opening doubleheader for Monday Night Football will feature the Pittsburgh Steelers at the New York Giants (7:10 p.m. ET, ESPN) and the Tennessee Titans at the Denver Broncos (10:20 p.m. ET) on Monday, Sept. 14.

Check out the full week-by-week schedule here. Here's what is in store for the Bills:

Game-by-game prediction

Bills reporter Marcel Louis-Jacques is predicting a 12-4 finish:

Sept. 13: vs. N.Y. Jets, Win

Sept. 20: at Miami, Win

Sept. 27: vs. LA Rams, Win

Oct. 4: at Las Vegas, Win

Oct. 11: at Tennessee, Loss

Oct. 15: vs. Kansas City, Loss

Oct. 25: at N.Y. Jets, Win

Nov. 1: vs. New England, Win

Nov. 8: vs. Seattle, Loss

Nov. 15: at Arizona, Win

Nov. 22: BYE

Nov. 29: vs. L.A. Chargers, Win

Dec. 7: at San Francisco, Loss

Dec. 13: vs. Pittsburgh, Win

Dec. 20: at Denver, Win

Dec. 28: at New England, Win

Jan. 3: vs. Miami, Win

Strength of schedule: T-5th, .525

Breakdown

Bills fans clamored all offseason for their team to get more nationally televised games -- and the NFL granted their wish. Buffalo will play four prime-time games this season, including a Thursday night showdown with the Chiefs, Monday Night Football matchups with the 49ers and Patriots, and a Sunday night game against the Steelers. If the Bills make the postseason for the third time in four years, the rest of the country should be plenty familiar with them.

Critical stretch

With four winnable games in its first four weeks, Buffalo needs to start the season strong because the schedule gets dicey from Week 5 through Week 14 -- a stretch that includes games against the Titans and Chiefs in consecutive weeks, the Seahawks, Cardinals, 49ers and Steelers. There are games against the Jets, Patriots and Chargers sprinkled in that stretch -- it's a period of the season that could heavily affect the Bills' playoff chances. At the same time, it will ensure the team is battle-tested by the time January comes about.

Travel miles

The farthest west the Bills traveled last season was their postseason game in Houston. This season, they will travel to San Francisco, Phoenix, Denver and Las Vegas. There will be little time to rest, as well -- Buffalo has one set of back-to-back home games, although it will get four home games and a bye week between Week 6 and Week 12. The Bills were dynamite on the road last season, losing twice in eight tries; if they're able to replicate that in 2020, it will almost certainly mean another trip to the playoffs.