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49ers-Seahawks predictably flexed out of Sunday Night Football

NFL: San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

When the Sunday Night Football on NBC schedule was released for the 2018 regular season, there was the hope that the San Francisco 49ers and Seattle Seahawks would both be in playoff contention on December 2nd, with “Richard Sherman returns to Seattle” as the biggest headliner. The 49ers are 2-8 and the 4-5 Seahawks’ playoff hopes could be just about gone if they lose to the Green Bay Packers on Thursday, sooooooooo... the NFL needed to do something about it.

They had a bit of a problem with CBS “protecting” Los Angeles Chargers at Pittsburgh Steelers and FOX “protecting” Minnesota Vikings at New England Patriots, theoretically preventing those games from being flexed to Sunday Night Football. The rest of the Week 13 slate is absolute garbage, but the NFL has worked something out so that Chargers-Steelers will go to NBC, while 49ers-Seahawks gets booted from primetime and to the 1:25 PM PT slot on FOX. This also means that if you were itching to see Vikings-Patriots and live in either the 49ers or Seahawks television markets... bad luck.

Also of note, Week 14’s Sunday Night Football matchup of Steelers at Raiders has been yanked, presumably because they don’t usually air comedy programming during that timeslot, and in its place will be the Los Angeles Rams at Chicago Bears.

Only Sunday Night Football games can be switched out, so this leaves the Seahawks with just one SNF appearance, a Week 16 home matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs, and that’s far from a sure thing to stay on TV if Seattle is realistically out of the playoff hunt over the next couple of weeks.