Superior Court Judge Jeffrey Locke on Thursday set Jan. 4 for the trial to begin in earnest. Hernandez is accused of shooting two men to death in 2012 after a chance encounter at a nightclub.
Hernandez was convicted in April of first-degree murder in an acquaintance's 2013 slaying and is serving life without parole.
Hernandez has pleaded not guilty.
Hernandez's lawyer wouldn't comment Thursday when asked about papers he filed under seal last week in the 2013 case. In them, he says he wants an inquiry into a juror's "exposure to significant extraneous matter." A hearing is set for next week.