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Vikings and Bengals will not be flexed to Sunday Night Football

The NFL Flex scheduling is a beautiful thing. Between weeks 11 and 17 (except, for some strange reason, week 16), the NFL will change the start times to all NFL games to "ensure quality matchups" on primetime and late-afternoon time slots. The Bengals weren't given a primetime game and the only games to be moved from the local 1pm time slot so far were against Chicago and Pittsburgh. Both were originally 1pm games. Games against the Chargers and Raiders are late-afternoon games, but only because they're locally 1pm kickoffs.

CBS and Fox can lock only one game per week, so the idea is not to have the best possible matchup that week.

So Jay started plotting through the late-season games earlier this year, seeing what game could be moved into the primetime slot on Sunday Night football. Let's update that file real quick.

The NFL has announced that there will be no change in the week 14 schedule. The Eagles will play the Giants in New York. That's the same week that the Bengals play the Minnesota Vikings. It's possible that CBS locked up the game, which features two playoff contenders. Another big reason is that CBS only gets two games that would feature Brett Favre. As it stands, the Bengals and Vikings will kickoff at 1pm (ET).

Another game that could be flexed is the week 15 matchup between the Bengals and Chargers on December 20. In fact, there could be more interest there for the league because the Chargers and Bengals would likely be division leaders and there's a chance that second-place teams in both divisions make a run, causing a dynamic storyline by then. NBC would obviously love to have the Vikings and Brett Favre, but it's more than likely that CBS locked that game, preventing it from being a national broadcast.

UPDATE: I can't believe we missed this. The Chargers / Bengals game is actually huge for playoff implications. As of now, both the Bengals and Chargers are 8-3 and are fighting for that second seed in the conference. So, yea. I would expect by this time next week, that game will find a national audience one way or another.