The New England Patriots will be playing one less primetime game in the 2013 regular season, as the NFL has announced that the Patriots have been flexed out of their week 16 Sunday Night Football match-up against the Baltimore Ravens.
Instead of a primetime game on NBC, the Patriots and Ravens have been moved to CBS with a 4:25 ET kick-off. In place of the Patriots and Ravens, the NFL has opted to broadcast the Eagles and Bears in that primetime spot.
That’s a surprising decision, in my opinion. While the 8-5 Eagles and 7-6 Bears are currently in the midst of tight division races in the NFC, there are plenty of playoff implications in the Patriots vs. Ravens game as well. The Ravens are 7-6 and are currently tied with the Miami Dolphins for the final playoff spot in the AFC. Meanwhile, the Patriots are currently 10-3, and will either be fighting for a playoff spot or the #2 seed come week 16 (depending on what happens this week in their game against the Dolphins).
There’s also the added factor of the Ravens-Patriots rivalry – undoubtedly one of the league’s best over the last four to five seasons.
Of course, we’re biased here in New England, but I can’t help but think the league and NBC made a mistake here.