NFL

Cowboys, Cardinals to kick off NFL preseason in Hall of Fame game

Start the countdown -- we officially have a date for the return of NFL football, and there are only 161 days to go.

On Thursday, the Pro Football Hall of Fame announced that the Dallas Cowboys and Arizona Cardinals will play in this year's Hall of Fame game, which kicks off the start of the preseason.

BREAKING NEWS: The @dallascowboys will play the @AZCardinals in the Hall of Fame Game! #PFHOF17 pic.twitter.com/X5VpsLbkbf

— Pro Football HOF (@ProFootballHOF) February 23, 2017

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It will be played in Canton at the new Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium on August 3, the first time in NFL history that the game will take place on Thursday.

The decision to pick the Cowboys and Cardinals comes from Jerry Jones and former Cardinals quarterback Kurt Warner being inducted in this year's class, along with LaDainian Tomlinson, Terrell Davis, Jason Taylor, Kenny Easley and Morten Anderson.

Two days after the game, on August 5, the class will officially be inducted into the Hall of Fame during a ceremony at the stadium.

Last year's Hall of Fame game had to be cancelled between the Packers and Colts due to weather and poor field conditions.