The NFL announced the 2016 preseason schedule on Thursday, and the San Francisco 49ers get three repeat opponents. Their new opponent this year is the Green Bay Packers, a team they lost to 17-3 in Week 3 last season. This is only the fifth preseason matchup between the long-time rivals. The 49ers are 3-1 against the Packers in the previous preseason matchups.
The 49ers face the San Diego Chargers for the 30th consecutive year, again wrapping up the preseason schedule. The 49ers face the Houston Texans for the fifth time overall, and the Denver Broncos for the 38th time overall.
Here is the full schedule of games. The NFL will announce the specific dates, but for now we at least know the weeks. None of the games is nationally televised. If Colin Kaepernick is traded to the Broncos, maybe that changes.
Week 1: vs Houston Texans (August 11-15)
Week 2: @ Denver Broncos (August 18-22)
Week 3: vs. Green Bay Packers (August 25-28)
Week 4: @ San Diego (Thursday, September 1)
Colin Kaepernick drama aside, the Week 3 matchup against the Green Bay Packers is likely to provide the most interesting matchup. Week 3 of the preseason schedule is generally viewed as the "dress rehearsal" game for the upcoming season. The first game of the preseason, starters often only play a series or two, if even that. Week 2 sees maybe a quarter or more of action. Week 3 though is when we see starters getting the most work. Many will not play in Week 4, so Week 3 is a big week for seeing where things are developing.
Even with that in mind, teams are still not fully game-planning against their Week 3 opponent. It is more about seeing what your own team is figuring out, and also sorting through the team for the initial roster cuts. But at least we get a decent showing of starters for one preseason game. And against a team like the Green Bay Packers, it is at least a moderately interesting challenge for the preseason.