After it was decided that the Bengals and Vikings wouldn't be flexed into Sunday Night's game on week 14, we wondered if the Bengals and Chargers would be. It made sense. The Bengals and Chargers are both division leaders. They are fighting each other for the second-seed and a first round bye in the playoffs. The only thing that could prevent the Bengals from being flexed would be if CBS protected the game.
And per PFT, CBS has protected the game.
Per a non-NBC source with knowledge of the list of protected games, CBS has protected the Bengals-Chargers game and FOX has squatted on Packers-Steelers.
All this means is that the time won't change the original 4:05 PM kickoff time and could still very well be watched by most of the nation. Since games against the Vikings and Chargers won't be flexed, it seems very unlikely that the Bengals will be on primetime television this year. Well, unless we're in the playoffs of course. I suppose that is alright.