NFL preseason: Aaron Rodgers, rookie QBs and others could make new team debuts

 Aaron Rodgers will play his first game in a New York Jets uniform on Aug. 3. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
Aaron Rodgers could play his first game in a New York Jets uniform on Aug. 3. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) (Rich Schultz via Getty Images)

The NFL released its full preseason schedule Wednesday as teams continue to ramp up offseason activities in the lead-up to the 2023 season in three months.

All but two teams will play three preseason games this season. Here are the most intriguing storylines and matchups to look forward to as the collective NFL world whets Its appetite ahead of another football season.

Primetime matchups

The NFL preseason will feature five nationally televised games, three of which take place over a four-day period in the final week.

Aaron Rodgers could make his New York Jets debut to kick off the preseason at the annual Hall of Fame game in Canton, Ohio, against the Cleveland Browns on Aug. 3 at 8 p.m. ET on NBC. The next national TV game will feature the Washington Commanders taking on the Baltimore Ravens on ESPN on Monday, Aug. 21.

Week 3 of the preseason will feature the teams of all three first-round rookie quarterbacks. Anthony Richardson's Indianapolis Colts face the Philadelphia Eagles on Aug. 24 on Amazon Prime Video, Bryce Young's Carolina Panthers take on the Detroit Lions on Aug. 25 on CBS, and C.J. Stroud's Houston Texans play the New Orleans Saints on Aug. 27 on Fox.

Rookie first-looks

While the rookies' primetime debuts won't happen until the final week of the preseason, their first NFL snaps will likely happen a few weeks earlier.

Young plays the Jets, Stroud faces the New England Patriots (and ex-Texans head coach Bill O'Brien) and Richardson takes on the Bills between Aug. 10-12. Second-rounder and Tennessee Titans quarterback Will Levis could see action against the Chicago Bears in Week 1, on Aug. 12.

Bryce Young will likely make his debut in the NFL preseason. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)
Bryce Young will likely make his debut in the NFL preseason. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Jordan Love era begins

The Green Bay Packers' post-Rodgers world officially starts on Aug. 11 against the Cincinnati Bengals. It's unclear how much the Packers will play Love given his newly minted QB1 status, but perhaps Green Bay will want to flaunt Love after Rodgers makes his first Jets start eight days earlier in Ohio.

Love's ascent is a long time coming but Packers receiver Romeo Doubs recently said he doesn't see a big difference between his new quarterback and Rodgers. Debate that all you want.

Old faces, new places

Apart from Rodgers in New York, there are a couple of big names who could make their first appearances in new threads in Week 1.

Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. could suit up against the Philadelphia Eagles on Aug. 12 if he's fully recovered from a torn ACL dating back to early 2022. Beckham Jr. sat out this past season before he signed with the Ravens during the offseason.

Miami Dolphins cornerback Jalen Ramsey, who was traded from the Los Angeles Rams, could play against the Atlanta Falcons on Aug. 11. Calvin Ridley could make his return to the NFL after a year-long suspension with the Jacksonville Jaguars against the Dallas Cowboys on Aug. 12. Baker Mayfield, the presumptive starting quarterback for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, could suit up against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Aug. 11.

While Derek Carr will likely make his first start for the New Orleans Saints, Jimmy Garoppolo might not make his for the Las Vegas Raiders if his foot isn't fully healed from offseason surgery.

Sean Payton will coach his first game with the Denver Broncos against the Arizona Cardinals and Jonathan Gannon on Aug. 11.