Giants head coach Joe Judge speaks at his introductory news conference at...

Giants head coach Joe Judge speaks at his introductory news conference at MetLife Stadium on Jan. 9, 2020. Credit: Corey Sipkin

Joe Judge will have to wait one day longer than expected to make his debut as head coach of the Giants.

His team will open the 2020 season by hosting the Steelers in a Monday Night Football game at MetLife Stadium on Sept. 14 — one day after the majority of the rest of the league kicks off — according to the schedule released by the NFL on Thursday.

“I’ll tell you what, when you get the schedule, it definitely does give you a little surge of energy,” Judge said. “It stimulates a lot of conversation between all areas of the organization — support staff, coaching staff — and you start preparing immediately for it.”

The schedule features one other Monday Night Football home game on Nov. 2 against Tom Brady and the Buccaneers. The Giants will play their Thursday night game in Philadelphia on Oct. 22. Among the other games of note include their first trip to play the Rams in their new stadium in Los Angeles on Oct. 4, a visit from former Giant Odell Beckham Jr. and the Browns on Dec. 20, and the regular-season finale at home against the Cowboys on Jan. 3.

The Giants will have their bye in Week 11.

The league also announced the preseason opponents for each team. For the second year in a row, the Giants will face the Jets in Week 1 of the preseason rather than what had been the traditional third week. It is a Jets home game and will be played between Aug. 13-17. The Giants will be at the Titans for the second preseason game, which allows for the possibility that Judge can organize joint practices with a team coached by another of Bill Belichick’s disciples, Mike Vrabel, then will host the Packers for the third preseason game. They will close the preseason as they almost always do with a game against the Patriots, this time at MetLife Stadium.

There still are plenty of questions pertaining to the logistics of the NFL’s season in terms of who will be allowed into stadiums, how they will enter and interact, and even if the league can launch its 101st campaign on time.

Before announcing their schedule, the Giants sent an email to season-ticket holders in which they said they have “every expectation that there will be a full NFL game schedule in 2020” but outlined a refund policy if that does not occur.

If a game is canceled and not rescheduled, or is played under conditions that prohibit fans from attending, season-ticket buyers will be able to decide between a full refund or applying the funds toward future purchases. Those who purchase individual game tickets from Ticketmaster will receive a full refund of their ticket purchase price from Ticketmaster within 30 days of cancellation if the game cannot be rescheduled or is played under conditions that prohibit fans from attending. If a game is postponed or rescheduled, no new tickets will be issued and the old tickets will be valid for the new date.

“We cannot communicate this enough: The safety of our fans, players and staff continues to be our first concern,” the email read. “We understand this is a challenging time for everyone, but we will get through it together.”

There are just over four months for all of those details to come together or be altered around whatever realities exist at the time. The Giants haven’t even had a workout together, going through a spring of virtual meetings.

But for now, the countdown has begun.

“The number one positive is we’re getting ready to play football, so that’s the biggest thing,” Judge said. “Once you get the schedule, it starts moving a little bit faster in your mind in terms of preparing for what’s in front of you.”

Crowder signed. The Giants announced that they have signed linebacker Tae Crowder, the seventh-round pick from Georgia, to a four-year deal. He is the first of the team’s draft picks to sign his contract, which is contingent on passing a physical once travel is approved. Crowder was selected with the 255th and final pick in the entire draft.

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