Last-Minute Remarks on SNF Week 11 Picks

Week 11 (November 18):

  • Tentative game: Pittsburgh @ Jacksonville
  • Prospects: 5-2-1 v. 3-5. Getting concerningly lopsided, and the Jaguars are losing contact with the division lead.
  • Likely protections: Bengals-Ravens if anything (CBS) and Vikings-Bears or Eagles-Saints (more likely the former even if Fox needs to protect Eagles games) (FOX).
  • Other possible games mentioned on last week’s Watch and their records: Texans (6-3)-Indians (5-3).
  • Impact of Monday Night Football: None.
  • Analysis: On the one hand the Texans won, on the other hand the Steelers also won and Washington lost so we’re only one result short from the scenario that I thought would result in the tentative keeping its spot… on the other hand we’re also only one result from one where I might have flexed in Texans-Indians without much of a thought. As it stands Texans-Indians is still a battle of two teams with the division lead, one of which is in the NFC East. Questioning whether the Eagles are actually maxed out on primetime appearances or not doesn’t change the analysis that much.
  • Final prediction: Houston Texans @ Washington Indians.
  • Actual selection: Minnesota Vikings @ Chicago Bears (which I accidentally encountered on Twitter before writing this post). Well that puts a whole new wrinkle into the question of whether the Eagles are actually maxed out on primetime appearances; as mentioned, even if they weren’t given the Eagles’ mediocre start I would have figured Fox would have protected Vikings-Bears anyway, especially given the in-division rivalry factor. Even leaving it unprotected, Texans-Indians has a slightly better pair of records and, given their market sizes and the presence of J.J. Watt and an NFC East team, isn’t that much less TV-friendly, and even if you’d normally give the edge to TV-friendlier Vikings-Bears Fox could have given it the lead doubleheader slot (now going to Eagles-Saints) while Texans-Indians will now be mired in singleheader purgatory. And then there’s the fact Steelers-Jaguars is going to CBS, not Fox, showing the league can make exceptions to the “flexed-out game always goes to the network losing a game” rule even though it would have made a lot more sense to bend that rule Week 7.

15 thoughts on “Last-Minute Remarks on SNF Week 11 Picks

  1. As said in my other comments, very surprised at this move only because there was a lot of criticism about the Jags only getting two prime time appearances to begin with.

  2. Adding: Vikings-Bears does make sense. Game will likely be for first place in the NFC North plus Khailil Mack should be back by the time that game takes place.

    Would not be surprised if Rams-Bears in Week 14 is also flexed to SNF for reasons noted in the other thread (most notably Chargers-Bengals likely can’t be flexed to SNF due to the Chargers playing on Thursday Night Football in Week 15 in KC.

  3. That could wind up being a “protection override” where the NFL does that. The NFL knows they can’t flex Chargers-Bengals in Week 14 due to the Chargers playing a Week 15 Thursday nighter, so this gets the Chargers on SNF.

  4. Before Monday’s announcement the Bears only had two scheduled prime time games. They were back to back in weeks 1 and 2. Week 1 was the Sunday night at Green Bay. Week 2 was the Monday night vs Seattle. Lack of success over the past few years have reduced the number of prime time appearances for the Bears given Chicago is the third largest media market and Bears fans travel well.

    When you count the Thanksgiving Day game at Detroit, Bears are making only 3 prime time appearances. If they keep up their success, I could see one or more of these games winding up on Sunday night:

    Week 14 vs LA Rams
    Week 15 vs Packers (provided Green Bay can turn it around and the game is not protected by Fox)
    Week 17 at Minnesota (should the rematch have major playoff implications)

  5. Really doubt the second Packers-Bears matchup would get flexed to SNF – the Eagles would have to take an unexpected nosedive the next few weeks to get flexed out – but Rams/Bears feels like the front runner for the Week 14 flex and Bears/Vikings certainly could be a possibility for Week 17 too. Can’t really tell with Week 17 until Week 16’s in the books, though, since that week is so dependent on getting a game with guaranteed playoff implications.

  6. Right Nathaniel:

    Highly unlikely Eagles-Rams gets flexed. Unless the Eagles are in complete control of the NFC East by then (quite possible given the Redskins, although leading the division now have several serious injuries that may cause a nosedive), that game likely is going to have major playoff implications for both teams (for the Rams, home field in the NFC Championship Game). Also, NBC might very well want that Sunday nighter for a “meet and greet” with the stars of NBC’s prime-time lineup ahead of that game (one of the reasons I believe the networks wanted teams in LA in the worst way), and that may make that game inflexible.

    If the more likely scenario happens and the Eagles and Redskins are fighting for the NFC East, assuming Eagles-Redskins in Week 17 is for the NFC East (and especially if that is win-and-in, lose-and-go-home), that will be the Sunday night game (Eagles can be flexed in for Week 17).

  7. Hello, Morgan Wick. This is Brian Inman sending you a message about the SNF Flexible schedule. Say, I wouldn’t mind if Packers vs. Falcons game at Lambeau Field on week 14 gets flexed to Sunday night football since I hope Green Bay Packers get to run the table this season with more wins.

  8. As for the tentative matchup for Week 11 of Pitt.(4-2-1) @ Jack.(3-5), I think this game has a better chance of staying in it’s spot if Pittsburgh actually LOSES this week at Baltimore. This would set the matchup of Pitt.(4-3-1) @ Jack.(3-5) and less lopsided. My alternatives for Week 11, based on records after Week 8, go as such in my order of preference(and remember, I only rank teams with winning records):

    #1–Minn.(4-3-1) @ Chi.(4-3) <—I guess my #1 choice made it. Look at that pull I have with the NFL and NBC. 😉
    #2–Hou.(5-3) @ Wash.(5-2) <—getting very intriguing after Texans started 0-3 <—this clearly doesn't seem interesting enough to the NFL yet to merit it a SNF slot. Vikings/Bears both winning, in Week 9, had a lot to do with this not making it to SNF
    #3–Phil.(4-4) @ N.O.(6-1) <—too much of a record disparity here it seemed, but it did get flexed to "America's Game of the Week" in the late slot on FOX though.
    #4–Cin.(5-3) @ Balt.(4-4) <—fell off of my radar due to the Ravens losing and now sporting a 4-5 record. I never think a SNF game, in Weeks 11 to 16, should involve a team with a losing record.

    My current Week 12 rankings after Week 9's standings go as such:

    #1–Sea.(4-4) @ Car.(6-2)

    G.B.(3-4-1) @ Minn.(5-3-1) <—the tentative game and likely SNF game

    My current Week 13 rankings after Week 9's standings go as such:

    #1–L.A.C.(6-2) @ Pitt.(5-2-1)
    #2–Minn.(5-3-1) @ N.E.(7-2)

    The tentative game of S.F.(2-7) @ Sea.(4-4) is going to be flexed out for sure.

    My current Week 14 possibilities after Week 9's standings go as such:

    L.A.R.(8-1) @ Chi.(5-3), N.E.(7-2) @ Mia.(5-4), Cin.(5-3) @ L.A.C.(6-2) <–getting to be most likely

    The tentative game of Pitt.(5-2-1) @ Oak.(1-7) is a goner from the SNF slate, for sure.

    My current Week 15 possibilities after Week 9's standings go as such:

    Phil.(4-4) @ L.A.R.(8-1) <–tentative game & unless Eagles dive, will likely stay, Mia.(5-4) @ Minn.(5-3-1) <–looking more promising as an option after both teams won in Week 9, N.E.(7-2) @ Pitt.(5-2-1) <–I know, I know, CBS protected this game the day the 2018 NFL schedule came out in April. Especially after what happened in last year's matchup, also in Week 15, with the controversial no TD by Jesse James. Yes, you heard me right, Jesse James. Can't make that shit up. LOL.

    My current Week 16 possibilities after Week 9's standings go as such:

    K.C.(8-1) @ Sea.(4-4) <–tentative game that might go away if Chiefs continue to win and Seahawks start to go into the tank. This started to happen in Week 9. That's the only way I see it going away though. Hou.(6-3) @ Phil.(4-4), and Pitt.(5-2-1) @ N.O.(7-1).

    My current Week 17 possibilities after Week 9's standings go as such:

    Car.(6-2) @ N.O.(7-1), Chi.(5-3) @ Minn.(5-3-1), Cin.(5-3) @ Pitt.(5-2-1), and Phil.(4-4) @ Wash.(5-3).

  9. Another Week 16 possibility, for SNF, after Week 9’s standings is:

    Atl.(4-4) @ Car.(6-2)

    What a rookie mistake to forget to include that game. Doh me!!! 🙁

  10. I haven’t commented yet, but regarding the Bengals-Chargers game being flexed in week 14, I don’t necessarily think the Thursday night game the following week against the Chiefs eliminates that game from being flexed in. In 2011, the Jets played a Sunday night game vs. the Patriots and then had a Thursday night game at Denver. Even in 2016, the Redskins had a Sunday night home game followed by the road Thanksgiving day game in Dallas.
    It depends on how well the Chargers continue to play, but if they and the Bengals continue to win, I still think there is a chance that game flexed no matter the scheduling for the following week.
    Interestingly, the Chargers-Steelers game could also be flexed in the week before, and that would mean that the Chargers would have four primetime games in a row. It’s highly unlikely that 49ers-Seahawks remains in that slot on Sunday night.

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