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Predicting the SoFi Stadium Opener

In search of hints as to how the league might choose to unveil SoFi Stadium this September, here's a brief study of how the NFL's newest stadiums debuted.

As it turns out, the last three franchises to christen a new venue did so in Week Two on Sunday Night Football, following a Week One road game. This was the case in Atlanta (2017), Minneapolis (2016), and Santa Clara (2014).

Before that trio came perhaps the best case study for SoFi Stadium, at the New Meadowlands in 2010. Both New York teams hosted their season-openers that September, with a coin toss affording the Giants the opportunity to play first – on Sunday afternoon – with the Jets slotted into Monday Night Football the following evening.

However, what's now MetLife Stadium is hardly an apples-to-apples comparison for 2020. The Giants and Jets had already been longtime co-tenants and split the cost of their new facility, whereas we know Rams owner Stan Kroenke is solely responsible for the development of Hollywood Park and SoFi Stadium.

Nonetheless, if you're interested in what precedent the NFL has established, know that five of the six newest NFL buildings hosted their first regular season game on Sunday Night Football in front of a national television audience, and in four of the last five instances, those contests were held in Week Two, not opening weekend.

Here are further details from those games:

2017: Atlanta, Mercedes-Benz Stadium

Week One: Falcons at Chicago

Week Two: Falcons home opener, a 34-23 win over Green Bay on Sunday Night Football.

*NFC championship game rematch

2016: Minneapolis, U.S. Bank Stadium

Week One: Vikings at Tennessee

Week Two: Vikings home opener, a 17-14 win over Green Bay on Sunday Night Football.

2014: San Francisco, Levi's Stadium

Week One: 49ers at Dallas

Week Two: 49ers home opener, a 28-20 loss versus Chicago on Sunday Night Football.

2010: New York, MetLife Stadium

Week One: Giants home opener, a 31-18 win over Carolina on Sunday afternoon.

Week One: Jets home opener, a 10-9 loss versus Baltimore on Monday Night Football.

2009: Dallas, AT&T Stadium

Week One: Cowboys at Tampa Bay

Week Two: Cowboys home opener, a 33-31 loss to the Giants on Sunday Night Football.

2008: Indianapolis, Lucas Oil Stadium

Week One: Colts home opener, Sunday Night, 29-13 loss versus Chicago

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