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Falcons get Thanksgiving Day, three Monday nights in 2005

The Atlanta Falcons' national appeal came through when the NFL released its schedule for the 2005 season. The Falcons will play three games on Monday night football, hosting all three, and also will get national exposure by playing in one of the annual Thanksgiving games at Detroit.

Atlanta, which finished the regular season at 11-5 last season before advancing to the NFC championship game, begins the 2005 regular season with a rematch of that title game. The Falcons will host Philadelphia on Monday, Sept. 12.

The team then goes on a two-game road trip to Seattle and Buffalo before coming back home on Oct. 2 to play Minnesota. The following Sunday, Oct. 9, the Falcons will play host to defending Super Bowl champion New England.

The Falcons also host a Monday night game on Oct. 24 vs. the New York Jets and on Dec. 12 vs. the archrival New Orleans Saints. Atlanta also will play in prime time on Dec. 18, traveling to Chicago for ESPN's Sunday night game.

Atlanta also will play on Thanksgiving day, traveling to Ford Field to play the Detroit Lions in a 12:30 matchup. The Falcons' bye comes on Oct. 30.

- From staff reports

Preseason

When Opponent Time TV

Sat.., Aug. 6 vs. Indianapolis* 5 a.m. ESPN

Sat.., Aug. 13 Baltimore 7:30 p.m. NBC

Fri., Aug. 19 Tennessee 7:30 p.m. NBC

Thur., Aug. 25 at Jacksonville 8 p.m. ESPN

Thur., Sept. 1 at Miami 7:30 p.m. NBC

Regular Season

When Opponent Time TV

Mon., Sept. 12 Philadelphia 9 p.m. ABC

Sun., Sept. 18 at Seattle 4:05 p.m. FOX

Sun., Sept. 25 at Buffalo 1 p.m. FOX

Sun., Oct. 2 MINNESOTA 4:15 p.m. FOX

Sun., Oct. 9 NEW ENGLAND 1 p.m. CBS

Sun., Oct. 16 at New Orleans 1 p.m. FOX

Mon., Oct. 24 New York Jets 9 p.m. ABC

Sun., Nov. 6 at Miami 1 p.m. FOX

Sun., Nov. 13 GREEN BAY 4:15 p.m. FOX

Sun., Nov. 20 TAMPA BAY 1 p.m. FOX

Thur., Nov. 24** at Detroit 12:30 p.m. FOX

Sun., Dec. 4 at Carolina 1 p.m. FOX

Mon., Dec. 12 NEW ORLEANS 9 p.m. ABC

Sun., Dec. 18 at Chicago 8:30 p.m. ESPN

Sat., Dec. 24 at Tampa Bay 1 p.m. FOX

Sun., Jan. 1 CAROLINA 1 p.m. FOX

* at Tokyo Dome, Japan, **Thanksgiving