NFL season is upon us, and back in April the league announced the 2013 NFL special events. Giddi up! Hit that Tweet button above to share the schedule and re-tweet. Finally some news that you really want to mark the calendar with (besides your wedding anniversary or girl friends birthday)
I’m a huge fan of these football events as I’ve always found it a good excuse to break away from the seriousness of managing the seasons bankroll, and use some of the extra gravy from the seasons profits on some entertaining and exciting games. And when I say entertaining, I still mean to make the money, so be sure to check out the NFL picks we’ll be covering.
2013 Scheduled NFL Game Highlights:
- NFL Hall of Fame Game:
The Dallas Cowboys will face the Miami Dolphins in the annual preseason kickoff Hall of Fame Game at Fawcett Stadium in Canton, Ohio, on August 4, 2013. The game will be televised nationally by NBC.
- NFL Kickoff Game:
The 2013 season will begin on Thursday, September 5, 2013, starting at 8:35 p.m. EDT on NBC. The Baltimore Ravens, winners of Super Bowl XLVII, will serve as the visiting team, due to a scheduling conflict with their Major League Baseball counterparts, the Baltimore Orioles (the Ravens’ and Orioles’ respective stadiums — Oriole Park at Camden Yards and M&T Bank Stadium — share the same parking lot). The Ravens’ will play the Denver Broncos in a rematch of a 2012 Divisional Round playoff game. Baltimore will instead host a Thanksgiving game (see below).
- International Series:
Two games will be played at Wembley Stadium in London, England in 2013. The Minnesota Vikings will play host to the Pittsburgh Steelers on September 29, while the Jacksonville Jaguars (in the first of four consecutive International Series appearances for the team) will play host to the San Francisco 49ers on October 27.
The Steelers–Vikings game will kickoff at 6:00 p.m. BST (1:00 p.m. EDT), and will air on CBS, while the 49ers–Jaguars game will kickoff at 5:00 p.m. GMT (1:00 p.m. EDT due to Britain ending Daylight Saving time one week before the U.S.), and will air on Fox.
- Thanksgiving Classic:
These games will occur on Thursday, November 28, 2013. The Detroit Lions will host the Green Bay Packers at 12:30 p.m. EST on Fox, marking the Packers’ 21st Thanksgiving game in Detroit. The Dallas Cowboys will host the Oakland Raiders at 4:30 p.m. EST on CBS. The 8:30 p.m. NBC game features the defending Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens hosting the rival Pittsburgh Steelers.
- Bills Toronto Series.
On January 9, 2013, the Buffalo Bills and Rogers Communications agreed to a five-year extension of the series, which features the Bills playing one home game each year in Toronto’s Rogers Centre. The Bills will host the Atlanta Falcons on December 1, one week after the 101st Grey Cup ends the 2013 CFL season.
- NFL Playoffs:
The last regular season games will be held on Sunday, December 29. The playoffs are then scheduled to start on Saturday, January 4, 2014. Conference championship games will be held on Sunday, January 19; the AFC Championship will be played at 3:00 p.m. EST On CBS, and the NFC Championship will follow at 6:30 p.m. EST On Fox. Super Bowl XLVIII, the league’s championship game will occur on February 2 at the MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, and will be televised by Fox with kickoff around 6:30 p.m. EST.
- Pro Bowl:
On March 20, 2013, the NFL announced that the 2014 Pro Bowl, whose future was in jeopardy after the 2013 contest, would indeed take place, again receiving a one-year reprieve. As in previous years, it will be held the week before the Super Bowl at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii. Among the potential changes for the contest include a change to a draft format (similar to the format the NHL All-Star Game adopted in 2011). Note: The 2014 Pro Bowl is expected to air Sunday January 26 on NBC, and will mark the final network television broadcast of the Pro Bowl before ESPN takes over broadcast rights in 2015.
Unfortunately we probably won’t see a Christmas day game this year, there are those rare years where the NFL league will schedule a game on Christmas eve or Christmas day. I think the next one is in 2016.
What is a better gift than that to spend the day watching these games as the kids play with their new toys for a few hours before tossing them aside like a dirty rag, while the wife and sister meticulously prepping the turkey and the all the fixins for that nights feast.
The NFL’s Thanksgiving Classic games, Christmas Day and Christmas Eve games however are not a regular annual part of the schedule (but they should be considering the salary these boys make).
Instead the NFL only schedules a Christmas game on a night when football would be played anyway, and has only scheduled regular season games on Christmas Day. And in recent years, the NFL has generally scheduled games on Christmas only if it falls on a day normally used for games (Saturday, Sunday, and Monday); it has never scheduled a Christmas or Christmas Eve game on a Thursday, though it has scheduled Christmas games on Friday, which is one of the only times the league ever plays regular-season games on that day of the week due to antitrust restrictions.