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Flex game for Week 15 still up in air

Ermenegildo Zegna Copley Place Store Opening Hosted By Tom Brady Getty Images

There’s a battle brewing over the broadcast of the Tim Tebow vs. Tom Brady Week 15 showdown in Denver.

The game between the Broncos and Patriots is the obvious choice for flexing into NBC’s Sunday Night Football.  Currently, the Ravens and Chargers occupy the spot.  And there aren’t any other particularly good options that week.

Mike Klis of the Denver Post reports that CBS and Patriots owner Robert Kraft are both fighting to keep the game in the late afternoon time slot.  [Editor’s note:  Maybe Tom Brady is concerned that Broncos fans will be extra “lubed up” for the night game.]

The Patriots possibly don’t want to take a later flight out of Denver.  Kraft also has a separate business relationship with CBS, which owns a restaurant at Patriot Place in Foxborough.

It was clear even before Klis’ report that something unusual was happening.  In all weeks (other than Week 17), the announcement is made 12 days before the game.  Usually, the decision comes on a Tuesday morning, if not sooner.

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62 Responses to “Flex game for Week 15 still up in air”
  1. mjbulls45 says: Dec 6, 2011 5:14 PM

    only thing better then Tebow v. Brady or Tebow v. Manning

    would be Tebow v. Favre

    then us as NFL fans have come full circle and can honestly say we have seen it all…

    and then we can all die happy

  2. phillyphever says: Dec 6, 2011 5:15 PM

    Come on Kraft, I don’t want to see Baltimore blowing out San Diego on Sunday Night. Take this and show the world how overrated Tebow is.

  3. stealkurtain says: Dec 6, 2011 5:15 PM

    What about the Detroit at Oakland game?

  4. rbrow018 says: Dec 6, 2011 5:17 PM

    I’m a ravens fan and I want to see this game on SNF

  5. trbowman says: Dec 6, 2011 5:17 PM

    Thumbs up if you want to see Pats/Broncos on SNF, thumbs down if you want Ravens/Chargers

  6. benh999 says: Dec 6, 2011 5:19 PM

    It still doesn’t make any sense. Why would the team owner want to limit his team’s publicity, especially since they just got flexed out of a prime time game this past Sunday?

    I don’t buy that some crummy restaurant owned by CBS paying Kraft rent or not wanting to take a red-eye on a normal week (no Thursday night game or anything) are valid reasons for the team trying to avoid a prime time game.

    Not that I have any other theories, but those two just don’t do it for me.

  7. ammarradhi says: Dec 6, 2011 5:23 PM

    We all want to see Playoff contenders, not the AFC West Basement!

  8. broncotis3000 says: Dec 6, 2011 5:24 PM

    Whats Kraft afraid of???? The mighty Pats should be able to handle this….Right???

  9. cliffordc05 says: Dec 6, 2011 5:25 PM

    The timing of these games should be a league matter and Kraft should have absolutely no say in the matter. At some point the league office should take his concerns into consideration and then make their choice based on what is best for the NFL and not the New England Patriots. Television revenue drives this league.

  10. autumnwind999 says: Dec 6, 2011 5:26 PM

    Raiders-Lions would be a good pick. Both teams have winning records. Both teams will need that one.

  11. stairwayto7 says: Dec 6, 2011 5:28 PM

    Why is it everytime Kraft or the Pats want somethign they get it! Goodell needs to man up and say you are playing Sunday night or next season, you get all 1:00 pm start time, no sunday night or monday night games!

  12. nineroutsider says: Dec 6, 2011 5:28 PM

    “And on the 7th day, in the 3rd slot, let it be Tebow…”

    I can’t believe I wrote that, I couldn’t stand watching him play against the Jets, but that Vikes game has me excited to see Bronco football. Notice that doesn’t say “Tebow” it says “Bronco”. That team is more than Tebow…that is for the Gator TebowHeads who should stick to CFT and tending to their mullets.

    We have to see San Diego far too much on national TV, give us a snowy December game in Denver with 2 playoff teams.

  13. autumnwind999 says: Dec 6, 2011 5:29 PM

    I thought CBS (and FOX) had a certain number of games it was allowed to “protect” to keep from becoming taken by SNF. If that’s correct, isn’t this all moot? Isn’t it CBS’s call whether or not they want to waste a protection on Tom Brady vs. The Knuckleballer?

  14. threedeep1998 says: Dec 6, 2011 5:29 PM

    Expose Tebow. He can’t run the ball with 2 minutes left down 28-10. New England will be too much for Denver to handle.

  15. mrflashy88 says: Dec 6, 2011 5:30 PM

    mjbulls45 says:
    Dec 6, 2011 5:14 PM
    only thing better then Tebow v. Brady or Tebow v. Manning

    would be Tebow v. Favre

    then us as NFL fans have come full circle and can honestly say we have seen it all…

    and then we can all die happy

    ——————————————–
    I wont die happy until I see Tebow help win the Broncos a Super Bowl title. Don’t care what QB he is playing against.

  16. cfmaguire9 says: Dec 6, 2011 5:30 PM

    I agree that Kraft having direct interests or stock with CBS would appear to be some sort of conflict of interest, which, to answer an earlier post is why he would want to “limit his team’s publicity.” They are the NE Patriots, they have plenty of publicity already unless you’ve been in a cave for the past decade.
    Additionally, players & coaches hate SNF/MNF/Thurs NF games and later flights as mentioned above.

  17. portnoychunk says: Dec 6, 2011 5:35 PM

    benh999 says: Dec 6, 2011 5:19 PM

    It still doesn’t make any sense. Why would the team owner want to limit his team’s publicity, especially since they just got flexed out of a prime time game this past Sunday?

    I don’t buy that some crummy restaurant owned by CBS paying Kraft rent or not wanting to take a red-eye on a normal week (no Thursday night game or anything) are valid reasons for the team trying to avoid a prime time game.

    Not that I have any other theories, but those two just don’t do it for me.

    ^^^^^^^
    He may at least have to give the impression to CBS that he is against the idea for appearances sake. Also, despite what you and others think about the Pats chances in the playoffs, as the owner, you want to set up your team for the best possible result in pursuit of a title. That would mean a better rested team for the next weeks game. A deep playoff run (possibly aided by home field advantage) would be more important than some Sunday night pub. in the regular season.

  18. ramofsteel says: Dec 6, 2011 5:41 PM

    Why not Carolina/Houston???

    Let both teams get some national attention. I don’t think Houston has ever had a SNF game.

    2 young teams w/ exciting offenses.

  19. dionoil says: Dec 6, 2011 5:42 PM

    Yeah, what clifford said, put the game on that will have the highest ratings. NBC needs all the help they can get

  20. gafraidh says: Dec 6, 2011 5:42 PM

    I don’t think Bob Kraft is concerned because of the CBS bar at Patriot Place. He is thinking like a fan. I like my team playing 1:00 on Sunday. Period. Waiting until 4:00 is ok, but I actually hate the prime time games.

    I do have the east coast bias, and with an early job start I often bail before SNF or MNF games are finished. Kraft was a fan long before he became an owner. I wouldn’t be shocked if that factors into his preference.

  21. sterilizecromartie says: Dec 6, 2011 5:42 PM

    If this game in NOT on prime time it will be a shame. Robert Kraft is not bigger than the NFL and definitely not bigger than the fans. The fans want to see this game. Put it on primetime. God forbid the mighty Pats may have to take the redeye on a private, pampered plane for 4-5 hours.

  22. all4patriots says: Dec 6, 2011 5:48 PM

    Occupy the NFL offices if they don’t support the nation’s Tebow addiction!

  23. dericivy says: Dec 6, 2011 6:00 PM

    If they want to fight about it, just make the game Chicago and Seattle.

    Most people won’t want to watch the game, but both teams should be fighting to keep their playoff hopes alive, so at least there is that storyline.

  24. vincentbojackson says: Dec 6, 2011 6:05 PM

    They’ll flex the Ravens out of that game. Nobody wants to see what happens when the team that lost to the Jags plays the team that just blew out the Jags.

  25. dasmol says: Dec 6, 2011 6:06 PM

    Keep the current match up. Ravens vs. Chargers

  26. briang123 says: Dec 6, 2011 6:10 PM

    Nothing would make him happier than watching the Broncos beating the Patriots on SNF. Like it or not Tebow is the biggest star in the NFL right now. (Remember, being a big star does not mean everyone likes him). Anyone who thinks the Broncos, with their style of play, can’t hold down the Patriots and beat them probably thinks the Patriots beat the Giants in the Super Bowl and that the Bills beat the Giants in that other Super Bowl.

  27. whoknowsnothing says: Dec 6, 2011 6:12 PM

    Put Tebow on Primetime and see if he can still pull it off!

    Iiiiiiiffffffffffffff Tebow beats the Patriots, maybe Elway will finally say Tebow is his QB.

  28. wte1 says: Dec 6, 2011 6:16 PM

    For weeks 11-16 CBS and FOX can protect 5 Sunday afternoon games and no more than one per week.

    Perhaps CBS protected another game or has used up all their allotments because if they protected Pats/Broncos there would be no need for a fight.

  29. bigcatdaddy says: Dec 6, 2011 6:16 PM

    I think Kraft knows it will actually work against his team by playing at night. Its going to be cold, and it gets harder to sling the ball around the park. If it snows it will definitely be hard and turn it into a game that favors the better running team. The biggie is if the Patsies get there rear handed to them on national tv by Tebow. I would love to see that.

  30. packman15 says: Dec 6, 2011 6:18 PM

    ramofsteel – Houston played Green Bay on a Sunday night when David Carr the human bag of potatoes was the QB.

    The Broncos/Patriots would be magic on SNF. Maybe we will all witness the Second Coming on national tv.

  31. nflofficeadmin says: Dec 6, 2011 6:18 PM

    Tebow vs. Vick. That’s a game I would want to see. For many reasons..

  32. mike5011ad says: Dec 6, 2011 6:19 PM

    I agree that Carolina at Houston could be a fun game. Leagues top defense vs one of the most exciting QB’s in the league. Houston’s never been on SNF and I don’t think Cam Newton has been on prime time yet. You could do worse…

  33. sullijo1 says: Dec 6, 2011 6:19 PM

    Tebow ran the ball 4 times last week.

  34. pastabelly says: Dec 6, 2011 6:22 PM

    Kraft has multiple relationships with CBS that extend to local tv and radio.

  35. eastcoastraider says: Dec 6, 2011 6:25 PM

    …I’m praying they don’t flex to the Raiders/Lions game. I’m flying out to Oakland for that game and I’m catching a red eye back about about quarter to 11 on the 18th from SFO. Anyhow they flex that game to primetime, I’m screwed!

    This flex thing is a nightmare for traveling fans.

  36. footballphan says: Dec 6, 2011 6:27 PM

    @stairwayto7:

    And maybe “he gets what he wants” (please show me proof of that) because he single-handedly hashed out the new CBA while his wife was dying in intensive care…all while YOUR owner played golf in Ireland with his figure-head job.

    Ever think of that one??

  37. monsterscream says: Dec 6, 2011 6:28 PM

    The league will find a way to screw the Ravens and keep the game as it was scheduled. The Chargers are having an awful season regardless of them winning vs. JAX last night so the prime time game should be Brady vs. Tebow. Also Ravens have a game on Saturday of the next week after a monday morning return from San Diego.

    They should switch it so NE/DEN is the late game.

  38. lanjoith says: Dec 6, 2011 6:34 PM

    Elway already knows what Bronco fans will find out by 2012. The Broncos are winning games by the skin of their teeth because of the defense and because they are playing crappy or injury riddled teams. The only win that’s even close to impressive during this streak is the Jets game but the Jets are overrated. Denver would get murdered this week if Chicago had Cutler and Forte and they will get smoked vs. NE. They may make the playoffs because the west sucks right now but Tim Tebow, as much as I like him as a person, is not an NFL QB. The Lions game is what will always happen when Tebow and the Broncos play a solid team. Call me a hater all you want but it’s the truth.

  39. atwatercrushesokoye says: Dec 6, 2011 6:38 PM

    Houston’s very first game in the NFL was on a Sunday night against Dallas…they won. That was probably back when it was on ESPN and not NBC, but they have been on Sunday night before.

  40. packman15 says: Dec 6, 2011 6:41 PM

    For the record Houston on SNF – 11/21/04 vs GB, 10/16/05 @ Sea, and 11/20/05 vs KC. None since. A couple Mondays and Thursdays in their history. Not much in prime time though.

  41. castleanthrax says: Dec 6, 2011 6:44 PM

    Take the night game Kraft…even as a Pats fan who tends not to want to stay up until midnight wants this, if only for the fact the last time the Pats beat Denver in Denver was a night game (see infamous safety game)…then again the Pats laid an egg in Denver in the 05 playoffs in a nighttime matchup.

    I’d really would like to see this as a primetime game though. Brady vs. Tebus.

    Should be a good one.

    Bigcatdaddy should realize the Pats have no problem playing in the cold and snow, it sort of gets that way up here in New England I hear.

  42. 8man says: Dec 6, 2011 6:44 PM

    I live in B-More but I’m a Patriots fan. I think the Chargers/Ravens matchup is still good television. However, Ravens fans don’t like when the Ravens play nationally televised night games because the Ravens have a notoriously poor record in them.

    I’ll say this; I think both games should be national. The Brady-Tebow angle is compelling and I think the Chargers have enough in the tank to make the game against the Ravens entertaining for at least three quarters.

    Now as for the Broncos, they can suck it! I’m not over horseface Shannon Sharpe and his “Mr. President Telephone Call.” Idiot!

  43. jikkle49 says: Dec 6, 2011 6:54 PM

    West coast teams always get hosed with having early start east coast games are supposed to suck it up and play but when it comes to Kraft he has an actual say when his team should play?

    Patriots have had exactly one trip to the west coast thus far this season compared to the 49ers 5 trips to the east coast 4 early starts and one on a short week.

    So forgive me for not feeling sorry the Patriots might have a late night flight back home.

  44. erfoster says: Dec 6, 2011 6:54 PM

    good vs evil.

  45. damko12 says: Dec 6, 2011 6:54 PM

    Tebow vs Brady ? Really? Really? Those two names shouldn’t be compared ever! Brady all day thumb up real fans that know something thumbs done teblow bandwagon fans.

  46. justvoicingmyopinion says: Dec 6, 2011 7:05 PM

    Looking at CBS schedule for Week 15, they have Miami vs. Buffalo; Cleveland vs. Arizona; NY Jets vs. Philadelphia; and Patriots vs. Broncos. They probably protected Jets-Philly, which at the time looked like the best game of the lot. Baltimore at San Diego is the current NBC game, with both teams being AFC, could easily slide back to CBS. FOX really doesn’t have any good match-ups in Week 15. Their best is GB vs. KC and only has meaning if GB stays undefeated.

  47. drstrangewogg says: Dec 6, 2011 7:34 PM

    They can flex on 12 days notice, so they’re not late just taking it to the wire unlike when Pats/Colts was flexed out weeks before they even knew who they wanted to play in that slot.

  48. smith62477 says: Dec 6, 2011 7:36 PM

    stairwayto7

    Why is it everytime Kraft or the Pats want somethign they get it! Goodell needs to man up and say you are playing Sunday night or next season, you get all 1:00 pm start time, no sunday night or monday night games!

    ___________________________________

    You do know that is not much of a threat. The Pats players,coaches, employees and fans would love all 1pm starts for every game next year.

  49. denversethalex says: Dec 6, 2011 7:49 PM

    Denver has had New England’s number over the last 6 years. Denver will find a way to win whether they flex the game or not.

  50. rally411 says: Dec 6, 2011 8:01 PM

    “Why is it everytime Kraft or the Pats want somethign they get it! Goodell needs to man up and say you are playing Sunday night or next season, you get all 1:00 pm start time, no sunday night or monday night games!

    ___________________________________

    You do know that is not much of a threat. The Pats players,coaches, employees and fans would love all 1pm starts for every game next year.”

    Also realize Smith that Goodell and Kraft are good friends. They golf together for fuch’s sake. Goodell is probably wondering if there will be a sh!tstorm of bad pub due to the average NFL fan that would love to see terrific Tom vs. The Golden Child.

  51. briang123 says: Dec 6, 2011 8:12 PM

    Like it or not people, Tebow for the moment is the biggest star in the league. Bigger than Brady, Manning, Rodgers, etc. The only question is how long it will be so. A win on SNF would put Tebow’s star even higher than it is now. And let’s not kid anybody. The Broncos style of ball control and Tebow’s lack of turnovers could beat the high-flying Patriots offense. Ask Brady about that last Super Bowl or Jim Kelly about his first.

  52. ampats says: Dec 6, 2011 8:13 PM

    denversethalex,

    enjoy the ride. Timmy is not bringing the Broncos back by 4 td’s down in the 4th quarter.Maybe against the Raiders /Chargers. The Patriots do not play in the AFC Worst

  53. sportjones96 says: Dec 6, 2011 8:15 PM

    I vote for Lions and Raiders. Suh’s first game back after suspension; most likely will be a must win games for both teams with the playoff implications.

    I understand it’s not as sexy as the Tebow vs. Brady match-up, but the Patriots have all-but clinched a playoff spot already.

    Lions vs. Raiders will have the bigger impact on playoff scenarios.

  54. thesportsguy52 says: Dec 6, 2011 8:28 PM

    And once again, my Ravens get looked over. I’m aware we have close to no fantasy excitement, nor an “elite” QB right now, but we’re playing the most complete football out of any of these teams, and we deserve more primetime slots-Jacksonville had two HOME MNF games this season-we have zero.

  55. derekjetersmansion says: Dec 6, 2011 8:35 PM

    NYJ-PHI gets the best ratings.

  56. huejackson says: Dec 6, 2011 8:55 PM

    Why would they put Chargers and Ravens on? Chargers are out of the playoffs, They have no chance of making it in…. Do you really believe Broncos and Raiders are going to lose the next 4 games??????
    Come on! Thats not going to happen.. Broncos and Raiders have already beat the Chargers once..
    Chargers are NOT going to the playoffs

  57. huejackson says: Dec 6, 2011 8:59 PM

    ammarradhi says: Dec 6, 2011 5:23 PM

    We all want to see Playoff contenders, not the AFC West Basement!
    ————————————-
    Raiders and Broncos lost 5 games… Look around other divisions 5 losses is pretty good..
    Do your research before speaking.. Its the most competitive division in the NFL
    Do a little research first you sound like a PATS fan..

  58. smith62477 says: Dec 6, 2011 9:23 PM

    Hey huejackson might want to understandhe was talking about the Chargers whose game would be flexxed out.

  59. sagatti says: Dec 7, 2011 1:57 AM

    Funny people act like Tebow is playing D as well. Even before Denver’s D was playing at this high of a level we could beat the pats…. Do your research.. add the fact that our O’s ball control style will limit the number of times Brady will touch the ball, please dont assume this will be a walk in the park in Denver. It WONT!

  60. bertcampaneris says: Dec 7, 2011 8:32 AM

    With all respect to Mr. Kraft, they need to make this happen. I think I speak for many when I say that absolutely no one (well, outside of Baltimore) wants to see the Ravens on national TV.

  61. gpfunk69 says: Dec 7, 2011 10:25 AM

    CBS already used their “save” on Jets/Eagles game, so this change is all on the NFL. GET IT DONE!

    I want to see Tebow & the Broncs show how overrated the Pats really are this year. Patriots D is garbage and who have they actually beaten?

    I mean all the Tebow haters make excuses that the Broncos haven’t beaten any good teams, but looking at who the Patriots have actual won against holds just as much water as that silly excuse made against Tebow.

  62. hopshark says: Dec 12, 2011 3:32 PM

    Ravens v Chargers! Who cares about whiny Kraft or Brady.. And i like denver but teblow, ha. Raven s are the ones on a cross country flight to play the game!!! There should be no resturant bc it seems to be a conflict of intrest while negotiating. I love the flex but let’s keep this matchup where it’s at fellas.

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