Week 15 will be a week of grave importance to many an NFL team.
While some have already cruised to the finish line and have sealed up their postseason berths, others are fighting for Wild Card spots and must win in order to stay alive. Some must win in order to stay atop their division standings. In particular, the New York Jets, Cincinnati Bengals, New York Giants, Washington Redskins and Minnesota Vikings must ensure that they get the results they want this weekend.
Here's a look at this week's slate of games and the accompanying television coverage information.
NFL Week 15 Coverage Info
Coverage maps courtesy of the506.com.
|Broncos at Ravens||1 p.m. ET||CBS||Greg Gumbel, Dan Dierdorf|
|Colts at Texans||1 p.m. ET||CBS||Ian Eagle, Dan Fouts|
|Jaguars at Dolphins||1 p.m. ET||CBS||Marv Albert, Rich Gannon|
|Steelers at Cowboys||4:25 p.m. ET||CBS||Jim Nantz, Phil Simms|
|Chiefs at Raiders||4:25 p.m. ET||CBS||Kevin Harlan, Solomon Wilcots|
|Giants at Falcons||1 p.m. ET||FOX||Kenny Albert, Moose Johnston|
|Packers at Bears||1 p.m. ET||FOX||Joe Buck, Troy Aikman|
|Buccaneers at Saints||1 p.m. ET||FOX||Thom Brennaman, Brian Billick|
|Vikings at Rams||1 p.m. ET||FOX||Gus Johnson, Charles Davis|
|Redskins at Browns||1 p.m. ET||FOX||Ron Pitts, Mike Martz|
|Seahawks at Bills||4:05 p.m. ET||FOX||Dick Stockton, John Lynch|
|Lions at Cardinals||4:05 p.m. ET||FOX||Chris Myers, Tim Ryan|
|Panthers at Chargers||4:05 p.m. ET||FOX||Sam Rosen, Heath Evans|
Note: Announcer information courtesy of bflo360.com.
Matchup of the Week: Broncos vs. Ravens
This game gives us one of the only real premiere matchups of the week: two great teams battling it out for AFC supremacy. And the surprise here is that the team riding higher right now is not the team we would have expected a couple of months, even weeks, ago.
The Denver Broncos got off to a rough start this season, but since going 2-3 out of the gate, they haven't looked back. They've reeled off eight consecutive wins since losing to New England on Oct. 7. They've also locked up the AFC West and they are currently projected to be the third seed in the conference.
But given that they're tied with second-seeded New England and just one game behind top-seeded Houston, a win this week could pay off big if things don't go so well in Week 15 for the higher-seeded teams.
Baltimore, meanwhile, suffered a resounding Week 14 loss to the Redskins and is suddenly seeded fourth after dropping two in a row. It hasn't yet locked up the AFC North, and with Pittsburgh and Cincinnati breathing down its neck, failure is not an option on Sunday.
Underrated Matchup of the Week: Giants vs. Falcons
What is happening in the NFL world right now? All of the teams that were supposed to be the best—the Falcons, the Ravens, the Texans—are suddenly floundering in crunch time. But hopefully, for the Falcons' sake, the floundering ends at the Georgia Dome on Sunday.
Atlanta, the consensus top team in the NFC, suffered an inexplicable 30-20 loss to the lowly Carolina Panthers last week to fall to 11-2. They have already clinched the division, and they're a couple of games ahead of the second-seeded 49ers and third-seeded Packers, but they've lost two of their last five—and that's not a mental place you want to be with the season winding down and the playoffs approaching.
Who will come out on top?
And Sunday's matchup against the Giants won't be easy. New York—currently seeded fourth at 8-5—has been up and down all year, and it has dropped three of its last five, but this team is still dangerous every time it steps onto the field. It just has too many weapons, and Eli Manning has the potential to burn any defense, any week.
The pressure, however, is mounting on the Giants: A few weeks ago, they looked like they were going to run away with the NFC East, but suddenly, they're just a game ahead of the Redskins and the Cowboys with three to play. For them, every game from here on out is crucial—including this one.