Sunday Night Football Flex Scheduling Watch: Week 15

Since it started in its current format as the NFL’s main primetime package in 2006, the defining feature of NBC’s Sunday Night Football has been the use of flexible scheduling to ensure the best matchups and showcase the best teams as the season goes along. Well, that’s the theory, anyway; the reality has not always lived up to the initial hype and has at times seemed downright mystifying. Regardless, I’m here to help you figure out what you can and can’t expect to see on Sunday nights on NBC.

A full explanation of all the factors that go into flexible scheduling decisions can be found on my NFL Flexible Scheduling Primer, but here’s the Cliffs Notes version with all the important points you need to know:

  • The season can be broken down into three different periods (four if you count the first four weeks where flexible scheduling does not apply at all) for flexible scheduling purposes, each with similar yet different rules governing them: the early flex period, from weeks 5 to 10; the main flex period, from weeks 11 to 16; and week 17. In years where Christmas forces either the Sunday afternoon slate or the Sunday night game to Saturday in Week 16, flex scheduling does not apply that week, and the main flex period begins week 10.
  • In all cases, only games scheduled for Sunday may be moved to Sunday night. Thursday and Monday night games, as well as late-season Saturday games, are not affected by Sunday night flexible scheduling (discounting the “flexible scheduling” applied to Saturday of Week 16 this year – see below).
  • During the early and main flex periods, one game is “tentatively” scheduled for Sunday night and listed with the Sunday night start time of 8:20 PM ET. This game will usually remain at that start time and air on NBC, but may be flexed out for another game and moved to 1, 4:05, or 4:25 PM ET on Fox or CBS, no less than 12 days in advance of the game.
  • No more than two games can be flexed to Sunday night over the course of the early flex period. If the NFL wishes to flex out a game in the early flex period twelve days in advance, CBS and Fox may elect to protect one game each from being moved to Sunday night. This is generally an emergency valve in situations where the value of the tentative game has plummeted since the schedule was announced, namely in cases of injury to a key star player.
  • CBS and Fox may also each protect games in five out of six weeks of the main flex period, but all of those protections must be submitted after week 5, week 4 in years where the main flex period begins week 10 (so it is always six weeks before the start of the main flex period).
  • No team may appear more than six times across the league’s three primetime packages on NBC, ESPN, and Fox/NFL Network, and only three teams are allowed to appear that often, with everyone else getting five. In addition, no team may appear more than four times on NBC. All teams’ number of appearances heading into this season may be seen here.
  • According to the league’s official page, teams are notified when “they are no longer under consideration or eligible for a move to Sunday night.” However, they rarely make this known to the fans, and the list of each network’s protections has never officially been made public. It used to leak fairly regularly, but has not leaked since 2014.
  • In all cases, the NFL is the ultimate arbiter of the schedule and consults with CBS, Fox, and NBC before moving any games to prime time. If the NFL does elect to flex out the Sunday night game, the network whose game is flexed in receives the former tentative game, regardless of which network would “normally” air it under the “CBS=AFC, Fox=NFC” rules, keeping each network’s total number of games constant. At the same time, the NFL may also move games between 1 PM ET and 4:05/4:25 PM ET. However, this feature focuses primarily if not entirely on Sunday night flexible scheduling.
  • In Week 17, the entire schedule is set on only six days notice, ensuring that NBC gets a game with playoff implications, generally a game where the winner is the division champion. In theory, NBC may also show an intra-division game for a wild card spot, or a game where only one team wins the division with a win but doesn’t win the division with a loss, but such situations are rare and NBC has never shown them. If no game is guaranteed to have maximum playoff implications before Sunday night in this fashion, the league has been known not to schedule a Sunday night game at all. To ensure maximum flexibility, no protections or appearance limits apply to Week 17. The NFL also arranges the rest of the schedule such that no team playing at 4:25 PM ET (there are no 4:05 games Week 17) could have their playoff fate decided by the outcome of the 1 PM ET games, which usually means most if not all of the games with playoff implications outside Sunday night are played at 4:25 PM ET.

Here are the current tentatively-scheduled games and my predictions:Week 17 (December 30):

  • Tentative game: None (NBC will show game with guaranteed playoff implications).
  • Possible games: Browns-Ravens, Eagles-Trumps, Colts-Titans, Jaguars-Texans, Bears-Vikings, Cowboys-Giants, Bengals-Steelers, Cardinals-Seahawks. With the Bears locking up the NFC North with their win over the Packers, the only way we don’t enter uncharted territory of some kind this year is if there’s no Sunday night game again. I had this mostly written on Tuesday and could have posted it if I hadn’t decided to include a section for my commenters’ “two regionalized games” theory, but then I had to fly up to Seattle on Thursday and didn’t have good Internet access until Saturday night, which makes this especially out of date with how much impact Saturday’s games were set to have on what games could be taken (with teams in the two most straightforward games playing each other in the early game, and the occupants of the two wild card spots entering the week, both of them with chances to steal their respective divisions, on the other). I’ve included most of what I wrote/would have written on Tuesday, but have applied strikethrough on those scenarios that no longer apply… and Saturday’s results officially mean the only way for NBC to be able to put on only one game is if one team has nothing to play for. EDIT: It was pointed out to me on Twitter that a Steelers loss could still set up Colts-Titans for the wild card; the AFC North loser in that scenario could do no better than 9-6-1, whereas if the Colts win the Colts-Titans winner would be 10-6.
  • Eagles-Trumps will be picked if: The Vikings lose AND the Eagles and Trumps win AND (the Seahawks win OR the Seahawks have clinched the strength of victory tiebreaker over Washington). This game now represents the most straightforward potential scenario for the league (with the wrinkle that a Seahawks loss to the Cardinals would put them even in common games with the other Washington, opening up an outside shot for Washington to get in even with a loss). The game got over the biggest, most unlikely hump in its way with the Eagles’ upset of the Rams, but of the four results that need to happen this coming week, the Eagles winning is the only one favored to happen, and by only two points over the Texans.
  • Colts-Titans will be picked if: The Ravens (EDIT: or Steelers) lose AND the Titans win AND (the Colts win OR the Colts have clinched the strength of victory tiebreaker over the Ravens). With this one, on the other hand, all three needed outcomes (one being the Ravens loss) were favored by Vegas.
  • Cowboys-Giants could be picked if: The Cowboys lose AND the Eagles, Vikings, and Trumps all win. This is the closest thing to a straight-up game for the division crown, even if the Giants have nothing to play for except draft position. The Viking win is solely to preclude Eagles-Trumps from being picked.
  • Cardinals-Seahawks could be picked if: The Seahawks lose AND the Eagles, Vikings, Cowboys, and Trumps all win. The Seahawks would hold tiebreakers over both Washington and the Eagles with a win. If the Cowboys lose out and the Eagles-Trumps winner is the NFC East champion, the Cowboys would still hold the tiebreaker over the Eagles-Trumps loser, and the Seahawks beat the Cowboys head-to-head, so the Seahawks would still be going to the playoffs with a loss (not to mention if NBC has to take a game that only matters to one team, they will take the Cowboys 11 times out of 10).
  • Jaguars-Texans could be picked if: The Texans lose AND the Colts, Ravens, and Titans all win. Even here, if the Colts and Titans somehow tie the Texans could be left with nothing to play for, so the league could well decide to go with a more esoteric choice like…
  • Browns-Ravens could be picked if: The Steelers, Ravens, and Titans all win AND (the Colts win OR the Colts have clinched the strength of victory tiebreaker over the Ravens), OR the Ravens, Titans, Colts, and Dolphins all lose AND the Ravens have clinched the strength of victory tiebreaker over the Colts. Note that in the “all losing” scenario, the Browns would probably also have to tie or lose or else a Colts-Titans tie would keep their own playoff hopes alive, which could mean Browns-Ravens can be played no later than that game. As mentioned last week, the Steelers need to win in the “all winning” scenario to avoid the risk that the Ravens might have clinched the division before Sunday night even rolls around. On that note…
  • Bengals-Steelers could be picked if: The Steelers lose AND the Ravens, Colts, and Titans all win. Suddenly, not only would the Steelers have surrendered the division lead, they’d have to beat the Bengals to make the playoffs at all. Even if the Colts and Titans were to tie in this scenario, the Colts would have the edge in conference record over a losing Steelers team.
  • Bears-Vikings could be picked if: The Bears lose AND the Cowboys lose AND the Rams win AND (the Vikings, Eagles, Trumps, and Seahawks all win OR the Vikings, Eagles, and Trumps all lose). This can no longer be an NFC North title game, but it could still determine whether the Vikings go to the playoffs, so long as the Bears have nothing to play for no matter when the game is played. The Bears would lose a tiebreaker to the Cowboys and outright beat the Rams, so that means they’d need two-game gaps on either side of them to the other division winners. The Bears are playing the mighty 49ers while the Cowboys are playing the nearly-as-mighty Buccaneers. This seems decidedly unlikely (as is Cowboys-Giants above).

As mentioned last week, some of my commenters think that if no single game is suitable for a move to Sunday night, the league could give NBC two games, making up for the lack of a Sunday night game last year, which NBC could then regionalize, possibly with a reverse mirror on NBCSN. I see the logic in it but it would be a logistical nightmare (at least the Broncos have been eliminated from the playoffs so nothing depends on the Monday night game) and while the lack of any known provision for it doesn’t mean much given the league’s propensity to bend its own rules in the past, nonetheless I’ll believe it when I see it. Still, just for fun, let’s see what scenarios would lend themselves to this. All of these assume none of the above scenarios happen.

  • Raiders-Chiefs and Chargers-Broncos could be picked if: The Chiefs lose OR the Chargers win. This would take some pressure off the 4:25 time slot but wouldn’t have any effect on any other games.
  • Cardinals-Seahawks and Eagles-Trumps could be picked if: The Seahawks lose AND the Vikings win AND one of the Eagles and Trumps wins while the other loses. These two games would pretty much decide the wild card – both spots if the Vikings lost earlier in the day.
  • Bears-Vikings and Eagles-Trumps could be picked if: The Bears lose AND the Cowboys lose AND the Rams win AND one of the Eagles and Trumps wins while the other loses AND (the Seahawks win OR the Vikings lose). The last parenthetical is just to ensure a Seahawks loss wouldn’t put the Vikings in the playoffs anyway.
  • Dolphins-Bills and Jets-Patriots could be picked if: The Patriots lose AND the Dolphins win. There’s a chance this just determines home field for a rubber match the following week, but it seems fairly slim given the state of the AFC Wild Card race.
  • Browns-Ravens and Bengals-Steelers could be picked if: The Steelers lose OR the Ravens win (the Browns would also need to be eliminated from the playoffs but the Ravens’ win did that by itself). On the other hand, in this scenario it’s fairly likely for both teams to end up making the playoffs depending on what the other AFC Wild Card contenders do, though it seems unlikely for the division champion to climb to the 3 seed and make these games for home field advantage for a game between the teams the following week. But this is open as a safety valve, and I doubt it’ll be the only one.
  • Cardinals-Seahawks and Bears-Vikings could be picked if: The Bears lose AND the Cowboys lose AND the Rams win AND the Seahawks lose AND the Vikings lose AND the Eagles and Trumps win AND Washington could hold the strength of victory tiebreaker over the Seahawks. This scenario is highly unlikely even by the standards of scenarios involving Bears-Vikings as the league could still decide to just put on Eagles-Trumps. (Moreover, this could be a scenario that depends on the Monday night game, as is the vanilla Eagles-Trumps scenario, as the Seahawks beat the Raiders but lost to the Broncos.)
  • Colts-Titans and Browns-Ravens could be picked if: The Steelers and Ravens win AND one of the Titans and Colts wins while the other loses AND if the Colts are the ones who lose, the Ravens have clinched the strength of victory tiebreaker over them. In this scenario, one of the Colts or Titans have been completely eliminated from the playoffs, thus necessitating the other team play at the same time as the Ravens.
  • Eagles-Trumps and Cowboys-Giants could be picked if: The Cowboys lose AND the Vikings win AND one of the Eagles and Trumps wins while the other loses AND if Washington is the one that loses, the Seahawks either win or have clinched the strength of victory tiebreaker over them. The NFC equivalent of the above. As before, this may depend on the Monday night game.
  • Panthers-Saints and 49ers-Rams could be picked if: The Saints lose AND the Rams win AND (the Panthers lose OR the Vikings or Trumps win). Battle for home field in the NFC, as long as the Panthers have nothing to play for no matter what.
  • Jets-Patriots and Jaguars-Texans could be picked if: The Patriots win OR the Texans lose. The Dolphins might need to lose in the latter scenario as well, but I suspect NBC would rather have the Texans in the other game, and it’s not like the Patriots would simply blow off a chance to pick up a first round bye even if a Dolphins loss earlier in the day has clinched the division for them. On the other hand, the league would probably prefer the greater drama of a division title being on the line.
  • Bengals-Steelers and Jaguars-Texans could be picked if: The Steelers win AND the Texans and Patriots lose. Yes, the Steelers have a chance to not only steal the first-round bye but to have that shot even if they’re playing after a Patriots win.
  • Dolphins-Bills and Browns-Ravens could be picked if: The Ravens, Colts, and Titans all lose AND the Dolphins win AND the Ravens have clinched the strength of victory tiebreaker over the Colts. The Dolphins beat the Titans, lost to the Colts, and would have the edge in conference games in any scenario where they finish tied with the Ravens. If the Dolphins, Colts, and Ravens all finished tied in this scenario the Dolphins would have the edge in conference games, so any scenario where the Colts play first would require the Ravens to win a one-on-one tie with the Colts. The Titans, meanwhile, could still make the playoffs but only if the Dolphins and Ravens, both of whom they lost to, both lose, precluding them from playing at the same time as either.
  • Bears-Vikings and 49ers-Rams could be picked if: The Vikings win AND the Eagles and Trumps lose AND (the Bears win OR the Rams lose). Now we get into a situation that’s the converse of the other Bears-Vikings scenarios, where the Bears are playing for a first-round bye while the Vikings have already locked up a playoff spot. Problem is, in this scenario it would probably still be best for these games to be played simultaneously with Cardinals-Seahawks at 4:25, as I imagine the Vikings would much rather face the Cowboys than the Bears or Rams, and it’d be best if the Seahawks result didn’t clinch whichever one it was. (And no, that’s not a recipe for Cardinals-Seahawks and Bears-Vikings to be the pick if the Bears have nothing to play for, especially if the Seahawks lose this week and Washington can still nick that strength of victory edge.)
  • Jaguars-Texans and Raiders-Chiefs could be picked if: The Texans win AND the Chiefs win AND the Texans have clinched the strength of victory tiebreaker over the Chiefs. This is for the relatively esoteric shot at home field in the AFC (which could matter but I feel like most people are confident, rightly or wrongly, that the Patriots and Steelers are better than the Texans) and depends on strength of victory breaking a certain way, so it’s extremely unlikely.

31 thoughts on “Sunday Night Football Flex Scheduling Watch: Week 15

  1. Lets just say the Ravens win likely PO’ed a lot of NBC execs who likely were hoping for a Titans win (which they did get), Chargers win (which they did not) and a Colts win (remains to be seen) since obviously with that, we don’t have the headache we are going to be seeing.

    To be frank, if I’m Roger Godell, I’m on the phone to ALL of the NFL’s broadcast partners requesting to make an adjustment to Week 17 similar to what I brought up before, were (assuming what is expected holds on Sunday) going to the all-games-in-a-conference-at-the-same-time I have brought up, but reversed from what I have written previously, now with the NFC games at 3:00 PM Eastern Time (since there are fewer of those) and the AFC games at 7:00 PM Eastern Time, divided between ALL of the broadcast partners as previously noted in other threads (NBC getting the #1 game in each slot, etc.). This might be the best option for the NFL even if it means having to compensate DirecTV for losing Week 17, with in future years, this becoming a permanent Week 18 (with a second bye week tied to mid-week games added).

  2. Wow Morgan! Well done post today. Loved it. I thought Baltimore winning would jack up the potential Indy @ Tenn Week 17 SNF matchup, but actually it seems to have helped more that I expected. Tomorrow, if Indy beats the Giants and New Orleans beats Pittsburgh, then Colts @ Texans is a guaranteed matchup for Week 17 SNF. This should happen, but as one knows, in professional sports anything can happen and that’s why they play the games. If it does happen and these 2 meet, the winner does indeed snag the last Wild Card spot. Though thinking about this now, Houston does need to take down Philly tomorrow too. So if all goes right in the world tomorrow and we get the matchup we should get, it would truly be a winner in/loser out scenario. Let’s say that these 2 do meet in Week 17 SNF and they tie and the Steelers win(in Week 17), then Indy eliminates Tenn on Head to Head and the tiebreaker between Indy and Pitt would come down to strength of victory. Not sure who would have that. Lol. Oh, by the way, the Dolphins need to lose tomorrow to make this happen as well. Sheesh!!!!!

  3. Lets just saw a MASSIVE sign of relief came out of 30 Rock and NFL offices when the Saints came back and won. Now, they can safely schedule Colts-Titans for the final SNF game. If the Texans lose at home to the Jags next Sunday, they not only fall to the 6th seed, but the Titans-Colts game became a win-and-in, lose-and-go-home for the AFC South (with unless the Ravens win on Sunday the only way the Colts and Titans are both eliminated is if they play to a five-quarter tie AND the Steelers win.

  4. Here’s how I see next Sunday:

    1:00 PM
    MIA-BUF, DET-GB, OAK-KC, NYJ-NE, CAR-NO, DAL-NYG, ATL-TB, JAX-HOU, LAC-DEN (yes, I think they make this an 11:00 AM local start)

    4:25 PM:

    8:20 PM

    This has a handful of meaningful games to some degree at 1:00 (including Denver as noted with a rare 11:00 AM local time start) and the more meaningful games at 4:25 with Colts-Titans the Sunday night game.

  5. Jesus this thing is hard to read… Why does he regurgitate the same information every single week???

    it’s real simple if it’s a new week post new data why make everybody scroll through a bunch of crap?

  6. Wild card weekend:
    Colts/Titans @ Texans Sat 1:30 pm
    Eagles/Vikes @dallas sat 5 pm NBC

    Chargers @ Ravens Sun 10 am
    Seahawks @ Bears Sun 1:30 pm

  7. Indianapolis/Tennessee still has permutations where neither of them make the playoffs If the Steelers beat the Bengals and the Ravens win the division and Indy/Ten ends in a tie Pittsburgh gets the 6 seed and if CLE/BAL and IND/TEN both end in ties then if Pittsburgh beats Cincinnati Pittsburgh gets the 4 seed and Baltimore the 6 seed and again neither Indianapolis or Tennessee make the playoffs.

  8. Cannon:

    You are assuming the Cardinals beat the Seahawks. If the Seahawks win, they will be the 5 seed and will be in Dallas (locked into the 4 seed) that weekend. With that in mind:

    WC Weekend:
    4:30 PM ET Sat. Chargers/Chiefs at Ravens (ESPN/ABC)
    8:15 PM ET Sat.: Seahawks at Cowboys (NBC)
    1:00 PM ET Sun: Eagles or Vikings at Bears (FOX)
    4:30 PM ET Sun: Colts/Vikings at Texans (CBS)

    CBS might want Chargers-Ravens, but I suspect the NFL is not going to make the Colts-Titans winner come back on a short week since that is the SNF game AND if that game happened to end in a tie, the Steelers could still get that spot.

  9. Here’s how I would have done the 4:25 game so as much as possible viewers where they had games that mattered would get to see both games:


    CHI-MIN, CLE-BAL, ARZ-SEA and LAC-DEN (latter I would have made a 1:00 PM game along with OAK-KC even if it meant an 11:00 AM local start in Denver).

    That to me would have made the most sense even if it meant multiple cross-flexes to do it.

  10. Walt: NFL fans and networks are sick of the AFC South and want as little as possible. I can almost guarantee you the AFC South championship game will be the early window Saturday ,appropriately with the horrible ESPN Monday night teen calling it.
    Dallas will either host Saturday night or Sunday late afternoon with Chicago hosting in whichever slot Dallas does not get. Chargers Ravens almost for sure on CBS Sunday morning with nantz and Romo

  11. I think the league wants to avoid what happened in 2006, when Fox had to switch everybody’s late game to 49ers-Broncos because the Lions-Cowboys game made the Eagles-Falcons game meaningless.

  12. Stephen:

    You’re right, however, I also noted I would have kept OAK-KC at 1:00 and moved LAC-DEN to 1:00 PM even if it meant an 11:00 AM local time start in Denver. Main concern was making sure markets who had compelling games tied to other compelling games got to see both games that matter simultaneously (one reason I would made the LAC-DEN game a 1:00 PM game and made people in Denver deal with an 11:00 AM local kickoff for one week). In the Bay Area, one of OAK-KC or SF-LAR could have been put on the CW station if need be to accommodate this lineup (CBS has a major stake in the CW and where the CBS station is a a CBS O & O, in almost all cases the CW affiliate is also owned & operated by CBS).

  13. The NFL doesn’t want a situation where Fox(or CBS) has to change their regional mapping at the last minute due to early game results. So the league as many games as possible at 4:25.

  14. Daneil:

    In this case, leaving OAK-KC at 1:00 and moving LAC-DEN to 1:00 would not have had any real effect on last-minute changes because that situation is cut and dried: If the Chiefs win, they WIN the AFC West and the #1 seed while if the Chargers win AND the Chiefs lose, the Chargers have the #1 seed. The loser is locked into the #5 seed, it has no effect on other games.

  15. The late 4:25 slot could be interesting… The chargers could be home field, it could be the Chiefs it could be the Patriots, it could be the Texans…..

  16. I Watched Some Crazy Week 16 Games I Found Out On Saturday That The Titans Beat The Redskins. I Thought That The Colts were going to lose to the Giants but in the end they came from behind to beat them. And In The End of that crazy Steelers Saints Game. I Thought the Steelers were going to win. But that didn’t Happen But in the end the Saints Held on and won the game and Congrats to the Saints On Being The No 1 seed In The NFC. And with that Steeler loss. And in The End The NFL Opened The Door For This Good Week 17 Matchup. Between The Colts And The Titans And This is a Very Good Flex Choice. But You Thought It was Eagles Redskins Guess what you’re wrong it’s Not going to be Eagles Redskins. But This Game Colts Titans is a good way to wrap up the regular season Cause it’s A Win And You’re in Game. And this will also be a good way to throw a end of the NFL Regular season party on Sunday Night. Cause I Watched that parts of that crazy Steelers Saints Game And in the end I was right. Until Then Come Back Next season for more Sunday Night Football On NBC in 2019.

  17. Would the NFL allow the hosting team market to leave their game if the other game was more completive and more important? i was thinking about the Patriots-Jets game in 1990 because NBC was allowed to switch viewers on WNBC New York to the Dolphins-Bills game. Would such a move be allowed these days?

  18. That comment from 12/30 was NOT done by me. It appears to be another fake post.

    Anyway, it would not surprise me if Dick Clark Productions (which produces the Golden Globes telecast for NBC) is looking for ways to legally force the NFL to either:

    1. Change the networks for the two NFC games
    2. To have NBC and CBS flip-flop games on Sunday
    3. To have LAC-BAL and PHI-CHI flipped on Sunday

    This would be specifically so NBC could then air the Red Carpet show ahead of the actual Golden Globes telecast that is currently scheduled to follow Eagles-Bears. There are going to be a lot of people (mostly, but not all women) who are going to be PO’ed and even if it is airing on E! will be hitting Twitter with Eagles-Bears “ruining” their experience because they want to see what celebs are wearing, which is the main purpose of the Red Carpet shows and NOT switch back (especially those who don’t have cable). There will likely be a massive “Twitter Storm” over this with many remarks of “stupid football” for sure as there was last year when a golf overrun forced CBS to severely truncate its Grammys pre-show, angering many. The NFL in assigning the networks this way is going to be likely dealing with unintended consequences from this, especially from those who don’t care about sports and are more concerned with what celebs are wearing as well as fury from ad buyers who don’t care about the NFL but care very much about such Red Carpet shows.

  19. Opening night prediction Sept. 5, 2019:
    Colts @ Saints. Or
    Colts @ Chiefs

    NFL promotes the hell out of Andrew Luck and the colts for the next 10 years you heard it here first

  20. That’s a very good prediction you mentioned about the opening night of NFL next year, Cannon. I will tell you about my prediction of Sunday night football primetime NBC games of NFL regular season 2019. Packers vs. Bears at Lambeau Field, Packers vs. Vikings at Lambeau Field, Packers vs. Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium, Dallas Cowboys vs. New York Giants at Giants’ home stadium, Dallas Cowboys vs. Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas, Texas, New England Patriots vs. Philadelphia Eagles, Philadelphia Eagles vs. Chicago Bears at Philadelphia, New England Patriots vs. Kansas City Chiefs, Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Baltimore Ravens at Baltimore, Maryland. Those are my predictions of Sunday night football NBC of NFL regular season I can think of.

  21. My prediction for Thursday night September 5th on NFL week 1 regular season kickoff opener NBC next season.
    1. If Rams win the NFL Super Bowl this season, Rams vs. Saints on Thursday night September 5th on NBC primetime.
    2. If Patriots win the NFL Super Bowl this season, Patriots vs. Chiefs on Thursday night September 5th on NBC primetime.

  22. My opening night predictions:

    If the Pats win, they play the Jets. NFL doesn’t have to waste a marquee matchup on the opener and also allows the NFL to have the Giants open at home against the Bills or Dolphins.

    If the Rams win, they play the Ravens. This makes the most sense on numerous scheduling levels from a NFL standpoint, clearing out the one interconference home game for the Rams next season (their other “home” game against an AFC opponent is against the Bengals in London) while also allowing the Chargers to open at home against the Packers or Vikings, clearing out another interconference situation.

  23. Hi, Walt Gekko. Those are also amazing predictions like that. But for next season, my predictions between the packers and the Vikings that it’ll be Vikings vs. Packers at US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis on Fox tv channel and Vikings vs. Packers at Lambeau Field on Sunday night football NBC.

  24. Yes I saw that Brian, however:

    In light of the trade of OBJ to the Browns and Le’Veon Bell signing with the Jets, you have to wonder if the NFL should do this:

    Since the NFL already has announced that Packers-Bears is going to be the Thursday night opener (while it is to mark the 100th anniversary of the NFL I still it’s really a cop-out because the NFL knows in light of the playoff officiating there are fans of the Chiefs and Saints who would have wounds opened by doing so), I would do this:

    Announce that Browns-Jets is the Sunday night opener while having the Patriots open on the road and playing their home opener as a Week 2 Thursday nighter on NBC (instead of NFL Network) that would be treated the same as the season opening game where the Pats raise the banner and so forth, with NFL Network getting the lost game back later in the year, either as say a “Black Friday” game in London or as a week 15 or 16 Friday night game (with the teams playing such game in either case getting their bye week ahead of that game. That would be a way to fully compensate NBC for losing the Week 17 Sunday nighter in 2017.

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