The NFL released the 2019 regular season schedule, unveiling three primetime games that includes a Monday Night Football game at New Orleans in Week 1.
"I think it's great," head coach Bill O'Brien said via Texans TV. "I think any time you have a chance to play on Monday night, Sunday night, Thursday night, I think it's great for the players, the fans. Obviously, the road games are a little more difficult but that's really the challenge. Can you be ready and focused and to be at your best on those nights on the road? That's a big deal. But I think overall, those primetime games mean so much to our players, to us as coaches, our organization and our fans."
The Texans and Saints will kick off their 2019 seasons in the first of a double-header of games on ESPN's 'Monday Night Football with kickoff scheduled for 6:10 p.m. CT. on Sept. 9 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
The last time the two teams faced each other was Week 12 of the 2015 season with the Texans defeating the Saints by a score of 24-6. J.J. Watt had five tackles, two sacks, two tackles for loss, eight quarterback hits. Houston's defense kept Drew Brees from throwing a touchdown pass, snapping the quarterback's 45-game scoring streak.
"Everyone's looking at that New Orleans game and obviously, a great opportunity for us," O'Brien said. "It's a great football team – Sean Payton, excellent head coach, Drew Brees, Hall of Fame quarterback so a monumental challenge for us but something we're all looking forward to."
Houston won't play another game on primetime until later in the season, when they host back-to-back primetime games in Weeks 12 and 13 at NRG Stadium. On Nov. 21, the Texans face the Indianapolis Colts on Thursday Night Football. Ten days later, the Super Bowl defending New England Patriots arrive for a Sunday Night Football game on Dec. 1. The Texans have traveled to Gillette Stadium for the last three years and will host the Patriots for the first time since Week 14 of the 2015 season.
The Texans could add to their three primetime games after flex scheduling kicks in for Sunday games (Week 5 through 16). The Week 16 matchup at Tampa Bay is still unknown, listed as a Saturday (Dec. 21) or Sunday (Dec. 22) game. The Texans-Jaguars London game will be nationally televised on NFL Network but isn't considered primetime since kickoff will be 8:30 a.m. CT.
To see the complete 2019 Houston Texans schedule, click here.