The much anticipated 2011 regular season schedule is expected to be released in the next 10 days, meaning it could be out a week before the NFL draft.

Commissioner Roger Goodell told about 5,000 Cleveland Browns season-ticket holders on a conference call that the league will unveil the schedule in the next 10 days, according to Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. The NFL released the preseason schedule earlier this week.

The Green Bay Packers are expected to host the first game of the season on Thursday, Sept. 8 at Lambeau Field as the defending Super Bowl champions. The best guess is they will play the Chicago Bears or New Orleans Saints in that game.

The Bears will play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in London at some point during the season in what is a home game for the Bucs.

Of course, none of the games will be played until the labor situation is resolved. It would be great if Goodell could provide a firm date for progress on that front.

Follow me on Twitter: @BradBiggs

Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune