The next to the next to the last week of the NFL’s regular season. Already.
Strangely, Troy Aikman will miss out on this week’s Dallas Cowboys coverage, because NBC has the game locked in and won’t give it up. The 8-5 Cowboys are trying to stay alive in the playoff race against the 11-2 New York Giants.
Aikman, with Joe Buck, will be doing NFC North-leading Minnesota at NFC West-leading Arizona in a game we’re not allowed to see on our free TV sets.
==5 p.m., NFL Network: New Orleans at Chicago (with Bob Papa and Cris Collinsworth)
==10 a.m., Channel 2: San Diego at Kansas City (with Ian Eagle and Solomon Wilcots). Neither teams heading to the postseason, so why bother showing this? CBS also has Buffalo-N.Y. Jets and Tennessee-Houston in this window.
==10 a.m. Channel 11: Tampa Bay at Atlanta (with Dick Stockton
Brian Baldinger and Laura Okmin). Would you have guessed this as a Week 15 critical game way back when? Fox also has Seattle-St. Louis, San Francisco-Miami, Green Bay-Jacksonville, Detroit-Indianapolis and Washington-Cincinnati.
==1 p.m., Channel 2: Pittsburgh at Baltimore (with Jim Nantz and Phil Simms). The top two teams in the AFC North make for probably the best showdown in that conference today. CBS also has Denver-Carolina and New England-Oakland; Fox has Minnesota-Arizona in this window.
==5:15 p.m., Channel 4: N.Y. Giants at Dallas (with Al Michaels, John Madden and Andrea Kremer)
==5:30 p.m., ESPN: Cleveland at Philadephia (with Mike Tirico, Ron Jaworski and Tony Kornheiser)