When evaluating an NFL schedule, there are a lot of factors that can impact a team’s results. What quarterbacks they play, the coaches they play, how many back-to-back road games are on the schedule, when are their short weeks due to primetime games and a few other variables can play a big role in the outcome of a season.
Travel can be a big part of evaluating a schedule, especially looking at west coast teams having to travel all the way across to the east coast. We will get the full schedule Thursday night but a unique piece of the schedule is how far teams have to travel for all of their games.
That is already determined and greatly benefits the AFC North and two NFC North teams. All six of the least amount of miles are from those two conferences:
6,442 Miles - Pittsburgh Steelers
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The Steelers not only have the least amount of miles to travel but also never leave the Eastern Time Zone.
8,348 Miles - Detroit Lions
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Due to neighboring a time zone split, the Lions cross eight time zones while traveling almost 2,000 miles more than Pittsburgh.
9.500 Miles - Baltimore Ravens
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The Ravens have more than 3,000 more miles to fly this year than the Steelers but are still the third lowest amount in the NFL.
9,986 Miles - Cleveland Browns
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Just under 500 miles more than Baltimore, the Browns have the fourth least amount of miles to fly and cross just two time zones throughout all of 2022.
Outside of the AFC North, Cleveland travels to Atlanta, Buffalo, Carolina, Houston, Miami and Washington this year.
10,086 Miles - Chicago Bears
[Phil Masturzo/ Beacon Journal]
The other NFC North team on the top six list, Chicago crosses eight time zones during the season and is the first on the list to crack over 10,000 miles.
10,086 Miles - Cincinnati Bengals
Almost 4,000 more miles than the Steelers, the Bengals cross four time zones in 2022.
Two Teams With Most Miles in 2022
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For comparison, the Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos are the two teams traveling the most in 2022. Seattle will travel 29,446 miles and cross 34 time zones while Denver will travel 27, 398 and cross 32 time zones.
Both teams travel four times as much as Pittsburgh while going across a lot of different time zones.
While it is just one variable in the schedule, and one that generally has some consistency based on where teams are located, it could be an important one by the end of the season.