The NFL kicked off the preseason last night, and it was business as usual. Drew Brees picked apart the Arizona Cardinals’ defense as the Saints defeated the Cardinals, 17-10. The other 30 teams are currently gearing up for the preseason as well. Some believe these four games are meaningless, but for many reasons they could be the most important.

For the players, these four games are the training grounds to fight for a spot on the 53 man roster. These games don’t count in the overall standings, but will provide tape of individual performances. That tape helps coaches choose players that have the mindset, athletic skill set and positional attributes to help a team throughout the grueling 16 game schedule.

Here is a look at the first week of preseason.

THU, AUG 9 TIME (ET) LOCATION

Washington at Buffalo 7:00 PM Ralph Wilson Stadium

Baltimore at Atlanta 7:30 PM Georgia Dome

New Orleans at New England 7:30 PM Gillette Stadium

Pittsburgh at Philadelphia 7:30 PM Lincoln Financial Field

Green Bay at San Diego 8:00 PM Qualcomm Stadium

Denver at Chicago 8:30 PM Soldier Field

FRI, AUG 10 TIME (ET) LOCATION

NY Jets at Cincinnati 7:30 PM Paul Brown Stadium

Cleveland at Detroit 7:30 PM Ford Field

Tampa Bay at Miami 7:30 PM Sun Life Stadium

NY Giants at Jacksonville 7:30 PM EverBank Field

Arizona at Kansas City 8:00 PM Arrowhead Stadium

Minnesota at San Francisco 9:00 PM Candlestick Park

SAT, AUG 11 TIME (ET) LOCATION

Houston at Carolina 7:00 PM Bank of America Stadium

Tennessee at Seattle 10:00 PM CenturyLink Field

SUN, AUG 12 TIME (ET) LOCATION

St. Louis at Indianapolis 1:30 PM Lucas Oil Stadium

MON, AUG 13 TIME (ET) LOCATION

Dallas at Oakland 8:00 PM Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum

Week one of the preseason has fans excited, and players focused. The replacement referees won’t affect the preseason games, despite the ongoing lockout. Before we know it these four weeks of preseason games will be completed and September 5th will be here. From there it is all about lights, camera, and action. Soon the Cowboys and Giants will be on the field with the captains standing at mid field. The referee saying those famous words, “gentlemen, this is heads and this is tails. Visiting team, make the call in the air. “