Jarrett Stidham, right, appears to be in line to take over from Tom Brady, left, as the Patriots’ starting quarterback, and his first test would be Sept. 13 at home against the Miami Dolphins if the NFL season begins on time. Elise Amendola/Associated Press

On Thursday, the NFL released the 2020 schedule for all 32 teams. For the Patriots, it’s been assumed that life without Tom Brady won’t be easy. If this year’s schedule is any indication, it certainly won’t be.

The Patriots head into this season with the toughest schedule in the NFL. When you look at the strength of schedule, which combines opponents records from the 2019 season, the Patriots have the hardest with an opponent winning percentage of .537.

Part of the reason is that, this year, the Patriots (and the AFC East) will take on the NFC West and AFC West. The schedule features six playoff teams from last season, including the reigning Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs and the NFC champion San Francisco 49ers. The New York Jets (.533 opponent winning percentage) and Miami Dolphins (.529) have the second and third hardest schedules in 2020.

The Patriots open the season at home against the Dolphins on Sept. 13. This will reunite them with several former players who left to sign with Miami this offseason – Kyle Van Noy, Elandon Roberts and Ted Karras.

The Patriots alternate home and away games for the first five weeks of the season. The team will travel to Seattle to take on the Seahawks in Week 2 (Sept. 20) for a Sunday night matchup. This marks the Patriots’ first visit to Seattle since 2012. They’re home in Week 3 against the Las Vegas Raiders and then hit the road to take on the defending champions on Oct. 4.

After a Week 5 home game against Denver, the Patriots have a bye in Week 6. They have a tough slate after that. Jimmy Garoppolo will face off against the Patriots for the first time when the 49ers come to Gillette Stadium on Oct. 25. The Patriots have back-to-back away games in the division at Buffalo and a Monday night matchup against the Jets.

Lamar Jackson will make his Gillette Stadium debut on Nov. 15 when the Baltimore Ravens visit. The Patriots then travel to Houston.

After a Week 12 matchup with Arizona, the Patriots have three-straight away games, with back-to-back games in Los Angeles. In Week 13, they take on the Chargers in the team’s first visit to SoFi Stadium, which opens in July. Four days later, they play in the same stadium on Thursday night against the Rams.

The team’s third-straight away game is in Miami on Dec. 20. They wrap up the season in the division and at home with their second Monday night game in Week 16 against the Bills and then a regular-season finale against the Jets.

THE PATRIOTS signed four members of their 2020 draft class.

New England announced that linebackers Josh Uche and Cassh Maluia, kicker Justin Rohrwasser and offensive lineman Justin Herron have all agreed to terms on rookie contracts.

The Patriots entered last month’s draft with 12 picks and after making several trades over three days, wound up selecting 10 players.

Six draft picks remain unsigned including their top pick, safety Kyle Dugger out of Lenoir-Rhyne.

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