Week 14 (December 7):
- Tentative game: New England @ Seattle
- Prospects: The Seahawks are just too terrible for this game to keep its spot. 7-4 v. 2-9? Please.
- Likely protections: Cowboys-Steelers (FOX) and if anything, Jags-Bears (CBS). Accurate according to this.
- Other possible games mentioned on Wednesday’s Watch and their records: Redskins (7-4)-Ravens (7-4), Eagles (5-5-1)-Giants (10-1), Falcons (7-4)-Saints (5-5), Dolphins (6-5)-Bills (6-5), Titans (10-1)-Browns (4-7).
- Impact of Monday Night Football: Saints can move up or down, but it probably doesn’t matter.
- Analysis: I said on Wednesday that this was Redskins-Ravens’ to lose, and both teams won. If NBC wanted to swerve us it would probably take a Saints victory on Monday night to produce a game only a half-game worse, but even then it’s unlikely. If it’s playoff battles NBC wants, the Redskins are in the thick of a wild card battle and the Ravens have a shot at the AFC North, yet are also far from secure for the wild card. If NBC wants to hold on to the possibility of flexing in either team later, the only real flexible game either team has the rest of the way, including Week 17, is next week when Giants-Cowboys will likely keep its spot, and neither team is anywhere near the limit anyway. If NBC keeps a godawful Patriots-Seahawks matchup (“hey, we get to see Matt Cassel!”) with a game like Redskins-Ravens on the table (and I’m a Seattlite), I might just give up. The fact I’m even considering the possibility and building such an ironclad case for flexing should tell you a lot. (Go on. The flex button won’t hurt you.)
- Final prediction: Washington Redskins @ Baltimore Ravens.