Thursday, Saturday Night Football Schedule 2014: Dates, Times and TV Coverage

Tim KeeneyContributor IApril 23, 2014

SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 19:  Quarterback Colin Kaepernick #7 of the San Francisco 49ers shakes hands with quarterback Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks after the Seahawks defeated the 49ers 23-17 during the 2014 NFC Championship at CenturyLink Field on January 19, 2014 in Seattle, Washington.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

It doesn't get much better than midweek football, and the NFL is upping the ante in 2014. 

Thursday Night Football has continued to gain popularity over the last couple of years, but with the games aired on NFL Network, the audience has never truly been maximized. But with the NFL's new partnership with CBS, which will televise several Thursday night games, that all changes this season. 

"NFL Network built Thursday into a night for NFL fans," NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement, via NFL.com's Dan Hanzus. "Our goal is to bring these games to more fans on broadcast television with unprecedented promotion and visibility for 'Thursday Night Football' on CBS."

It's a win-win: While the league sees money signs, fans will get to see more football. 

NFL's PR Twitter feed offered a stat about this year's packed slate:

Let's take a closer look at the complete schedule for all Thursday and Saturday games, courtesy of NFL.com

 

Thursday/Saturday Night Football

2014 Thursday/Saturday Night Football Schedule
WeekDateMatchupTime (ET)TV
1Thursday, 9/4Green Bay Packers at Seattle Seahawks8:30 p.m.NBC
2Thursday, 9/11Pittsburgh Steelers at Baltimore Ravens8:25 p.m.CBS/NFL Network
3Thursday, 9/18Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Atlanta Falcons8:25 p.m.CBS/NFL Network
4Thursday, 9/25New York Giants at Washington Redskins8:25 p.m.CBS/NFL Network
5Thursday, 10/2Minnesota Vikings at Green Bay Packers8:25 p.m.CBS/NFL Network
6Thursday, 10/9Indianapolis Colts at Houston Texans8:25 p.m.CBS/NFL Network
7Thursday, 10/16New York Jets at New England Patriots8:25 p.m.CBS/NFL Network
8Thursday, 10/23San Diego Chargers at Denver Broncos8:25 p.m.CBS/NFL Network
9Thursday, 10/30New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers8:25 p.m.NFL Network
10Thursday, 11/6Cleveland Browns at Cincinnati Bengals8:25 p.m.NFL Network
11Thursday, 11/13Buffalo Bills at Miami Dolphins8:25 p.m.NFL Network
12Thursday, 11/20Kansas City Chiefs at Oakland Raiders8:25 p.m.NFL Network
13Thursday, 11/27Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions12:30 p.m.CBS
13Thursday, 11/27Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys4:30 p.m.FOX
13Thursday, 11/27Seattle Seahawks at San Francisco 49ers8:30 p.m.NBC
14Thursday, 12/4Dallas Cowboys at Chicago Bears8:25 p.m.NFL Network
15Thursday, 12/11Arizona Cardinals at St. Louis Rams8:25 p.m.NFL Network
16Thursday, 12/18Tennessee Titans at Jacksonville Jaguars8:25 p.m.NFL Network
17Saturday, 12/20Philadelphia Eagles at Washington Redskins4:30 p.m.CBS/NFL Network
17Saturday, 12/20San Diego Chargers at San Francisco 49ers4:30 p.m.CBS/NFL Network
NFL.com
*Note: Weeks 1 and 13 are not "Thursday Night Football," as they air on NBC.
 
Season Opener

Jeffrey Phelps

The NFL season will officially start with the Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks hosting the Green Bay Packers.

With Russell Wilson progressing another year, a healthy Percy Harvin, who finally showed in the Super Bowl what he's capable of when actually on the gridiron, and a running game behind Marshawn Lynch and Christine Michael, Pete Carroll's squad should have plenty of offensive firepower. But there's no question this team is built on its big, fast, physical defense. 

That's often more apparent at Century Link, where the 'Hawks have won 17 of 18 over the last two years. 

However, Green Bay's high-powered offense presents a compelling clash of styles. 

Aaron Rodgers, whose injury last year derailed the Packers' season, is one of the most dominant quarterbacks in the league, and second-year running back Eddie Lacy offers the blend of speed and physicality needed to have success against the Seahawks. 

And, of course, there's a bit of history here, as NBC Sports noted: 

It would be difficult to dream up a better season opener than this one. 

 

Turkey Day Madness

SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 19:  Cornerback Richard Sherman #25 of the Seattle Seahawks talks with the referee after being called for an unsportsmanlike penalty for taunting wide receiver Michael Crabtree #15 of the San Francisco 49ers late in the fourth quarte
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Before the schedule was official, NFL Network's Rich Eisen passed along this teasing tweet: 

The man was not joking. 

Headlining one of the most captivating days of every NFL season will be the Seahawks traveling to San Francisco for the newest chapter of what has developed into the most heated rivalry in the league. 

The coaches hate each other, although it's been far too long since we've had a postgame altercation, the fans hate each other, the players hate each other and they didn't exactly end the 2013 season on the most pleasant of terms. 

As you probably remember, Richard Sherman batted down a late Colin Kaepernick throw to seal a trip to the Super Bowl for the Seahawks, and he followed it up with one of the most memorable postgame interviews ever.

Not only is there an absurd amount of bad blood between the NFC West rivals, but these two teams are the cream of the crop in the NFL and play an enthralling style of physical football. The Seahawks vs. 49ers has become a must-watch matchup over the last two years, and hosting it on Thanksgiving is just the cherry on top. 

But it doesn't end there, as there will be two other intradivisional matchups.

The Chicago Bears and Detroit Lions, who boast two of the most explosive offenses in the league, start the day off, followed by the ever-popular (and ever-hated) Dallas Cowboys and Philadelphia Eagles. 

CBS Sports' Andrew Catalon put it simply:

You better start rearranging your Thanksgiving plans now.