Speaking of how difficult the process of putting together the schedule is, one change to the 2012 NFL schedule has already been made.
The Raiders and Dolphins announced today that their Week Two game in Miami, which had been scheduled for a 4:15 p.m. Eastern kickoff on Sunday, September 16, has been moved to a 1 p.m. kickoff. Rosh Hashana starts at sundown that evening, and the earlier kickoff will give fans time to get home before sundown.
With a Dolphins home game that day, the NFL is running into two of the issues it often faces with the schedule: Wanting to avoid early-afternoon games under the hot Florida sun in September, while also wanting to avoid conflicts with the Jewish holidays. NFL scheduling czar Howard Katz told the New York Times that when the NFL put the Jets at home on Rosh Hashanah and the start of Yom Kippur in 2009, he got an earful.
In this case, the league has decided that avoiding a conflict with Rosh Hashanah is worth forcing fans to sit out in the heat for a few hours.