Who has the hardest schedule in the NFL in 2024?

According to how team's finished in 2023, we can see who has the toughest schedule in the NFL for 2024.
Pittsburgh Steelers v Cleveland Browns
Pittsburgh Steelers v Cleveland Browns / Jason Miller/GettyImages

The NFL strength of schedule is usually measured by how the teams did in the previous season. Who has the hardest schedule in the NFL for 2024? If the SOS is based on the 2023 regular-season records, as this one is, then the Cleveland Browns will have the toughest schedule in 2024.

According to this chart, the Browns opponents in the coming season had a combined 2023 record of 158-131, which is good for a .547 winning percentage.

So, the Browns will effectively play a 9.3 win team every week of the 2024 NFL Season And obviously, that would be 9.3 wins per 17 games, which the NFL moved to in 2021. The two teams that round out the top three are the Baltimore Raven and Pittsburgh Steelers, who are all in the AFC North.

The AFC North has been quite the division recently, so that's why those teams tend to have the tougher schedules. Conversely, the four NFC South teams have one of the five-easiest schedules in the NFL for 2024, and this is obviously because the NFC South has been a stink-fest in recent years.

Anyway, the Browns had quite the year in 2023. Deshaun Watson missed most of the season, and veteran Joe Flacco ended up being the unlikely hero for them, helping them into the playoffs. They got destroyed by the Houston Texans in the first round, but to even get to that point without their starting QB was miraculous.

If Watson can return to his old form, the Browns will be lethal in 2024, even with their tough schedule. The schedule isn't random, there are formulas that help figure it out year after year, so this isn't like Cleveland got some unlikely hand.

Twelve of the Browns games in 2024 will be against teams that were better than .500 during the 2023 season.