The NFL on Tuesday made their 18-week schedule official, adding a 17th game to the regular-season slate. It’s the first addition to the regular-season schedule since the league jumped from 14 games to 16 in the 1978 season.
The additional game will be added on a rotating basis against a team from the opposite conference. For the 49ers, they’ll face the Bengals in Cincinnati this season since the Bengals were the last-place finishers in the AFC North.
San Francisco last faced the Bengals in the 2019 season at Paul Brown Stadium. The 49ers blew out the home team 41-17 in a game Cincinnati entered as the favorites.
The league is expected to eliminate one preseason game to drop the exhibition slate to three games. There’ll be a one-week Bye between the third preseason game and the start of the regular season per NFL Media’s Tom Pelissero. They won’t add an additional Bye during the regular season despite tacking on an 18th week.
The date of the 49ers’ trip to Cincinnati hasn’t been set, and will come out once the full schedule is released sometime in April.