The 2013 NFL schedule has been released, complete with 48 primetime games and 51 nationally-televised games. One more Week 17 game will be added to the prime-time slate when NBC gets its final Sunday flex, and there's a chance the final six Sunday Night Football games on the current sked change on the fly as a result of flex scheduling. In the meantime, though, here's how we rank the 48 primetime options we currently have to work with...
1. Broncos at Patriots (Nov. 24, NBC): Peyton Manning vs. Tom Brady, and maybe the best two teams in football.
2. Broncos at Colts (Oct. 20, NBC): Peyton Manning goes back to Indianapolis for the first time to battle Andrew Luck.
3. Ravens at Broncos (Sept. 5, NBC): Yeah, the Broncos are gonna be quite the draw this year. This rematch of their memorable divisional round game against the Super Bowl champs kicks off the NFL season.
4. 49ers at Seahawks (Sept. 15, NBC): Arguably the two best teams in the NFC square off in Week 2 with plenty of hype attached to both.
5. Chiefs at Eagles (Sept. 19, NFL Network): Andy Reid returns to Philadelphia.
6. Eagles at Redskins (Sept. 9, ESPN): Chip Kelly makes his debut against Robert Griffin III and Co.
7. Patriots at Ravens (Dec. 22, NBC): Rematch of last year's AFC title game.
8. Falcons at 49ers (Dec. 23, ESPN): Top two seeds from the NFC in 2012.
9. Packers at Giants (Nov. 17, NBC): These two teams have built quite the rivalry in recent years and it should be a high scoring game.
10. Falcons at Packers (Dec. 8, NBC): This NFC matchup could help decide who gets a first-round bye.
11. Patriots at Falcons (Sept. 29, NBC): The two No. 1 seeds from last year go head-to-head.
12. 49ers at Redskins (Nov. 25, ESPN): Do you like the read-option? RGIII vs Kaepernick should be one of the most exciting matchups of the regular season.
13. Bears at Packers (Nov. 4, ESPN): Another game in a great rivalry. Both are playoff-caliber teams.
14. Giants at Cowboys (Sept. 8, NBC): A rematch of last year's opener between two teams that always have dramatic matchups.
15. Giants at Bears (Oct. 10, NFL Network): Potential early-season playoff implications.
16. Saints at Falcons (Nov. 21, NFL Network): Rivals should do battle for the NFC South title with the return of Sean Payton.
17. Saints at Seahawks (Dec. 2, ESPN): Drew Brees vs. Russell Wilson in a December matchup between the two great vertically challenged quarterbacks.
18. Redskins at Cowboys (Oct. 13, NBC): Rematch of last year's do-or-die primetime finale.
19. Cowboys at Saints (Nov. 10, NBC): Two closely linked teams with an interesting history in what could be a shootout.
20. Packers vs. Vikings (Oct. 27, NBC): Two NFC North playoff teams. Will Minnesota pull it off again?
21. Redskins at Vikings (Nov. 7, NFL Network): League's two rushers from 2012 (don't forget about Alfred Morris). Oh, and RG3.
22. Giants at Redskins (Dec. 1, NBC): Key December matchup in the tight NFC East.
23. Cowboys at Bears (Dec. 9, ESPN): Almost no way this game doesn't have playoff implications come early December.
24. Steelers at Ravens (Nov. 28, NBC): Solid for Thanksgiving and one of the fiercest rivalries in football.
25. Bengals at Steelers (Dec. 15, NBC): Key late matchup in the tight AFC North.
26. Steelers at Bengals (Sept. 16, ESPN): Key early matchup in the tight AFC North.
27. Colts at Texans (Nov. 3, NBC): Big November AFC South matchup as both look to return to the playoffs.
28. Dolphins at Saints (Sept. 30, ESPN): First national look at the new-look Phins and Saints.
29. Texans at Chargers (Sept. 9, ESPN): Texans bring a new jolt to the second half of the MNF Week 1 doubleheader.
30. Bears at Steelers (Sept. 22, NBC): An early look at the Bears with Marc Trestman and without Brian Urlacher or Lovie Smith.
31. Texans at 49ers (Oct. 6, NBC): Two division favorites in an early-season matchup. Amazingly, this is NBC's worst game.
32. 49ers at Rams (Sept. 26, NFL Network): St. Louis was unbeaten against the powerhouse Niners last year in a game that has upset potential.
33. Vikings at Giants (Oct. 21, ESPN): Two NFC playoff teams in MetLife.
34. Colts at Chargers (Oct. 14, ESPN): A look at Andrew Luck in a tough prime-time road game against Philip Rivers.
35. Panthers at Buccaneers (Nov. 24, NFL Network): Two good young quarterbacks, Cam Newton and Josh Freeman, in a divisional matchup.
36. Seahawks at Cardinals (Oct. 17, NFL Network): Depends on which Cardinals team shows up in the divisional matchup. This could turn ugly.
37. Ravens at Lions (Dec. 16, ESPN): If the Lions get back on track this year, this could be a fun game, or at least a late season trap for Baltimore.
38. Bengals at Dolphins (Oct. 31, NFL Network): Two of the league's promising young quarterbacks on Halloween.
39. Chargers at Broncos (Dec. 12, NFL Network): All depends on if the Bolts can stay competitive this year.
40. Seahawks at Rams (Oct. 28, ESPN): A chance for St. Louis to make a statement in what suddenly looks to be a tough division.
41. Patriots at Panthers (Nov. 18, ESPN): Cam Newton could save this matchup, but this game could be a blowout.
42. Raiders at Broncos (Sept. 23, ESPN): At least it's a divisional matchup and Oakland won't be eliminated from the playoffs yet!
43.Jets at Patriots (Sept. 12, NFL Network): After what we all endured in 2012, maybe this game should be higher up the list for some New York Jet schadenfreude.
44. Dolphins at Buccaneers (Nov. 11, ESPN): Um, Mike Wallace vs. Darrelle Revis, maybe?
45. Colts at Titans (Nov. 14, NFL Network): Same deal as Raiders-Broncos. Hard to fathom the Titans being compelling in mid-November.
46. Texans at Jaguars (Dec. 5, NFL Network): Brutal. At least give us the Jags earlier in the year.
47. Jets at Falcons (Oct. 7, ESPN): Another potential blowout involving the Jets.
48. Bills at Browns (Oct. 3, NFL Network): The worst of the lot. At least they give the Bills a team they can compete with!
@awfulannouncing I'm biased, but 49ers-Seahawks should be #1
@awfulannouncing patriots were not the #1 seed last year
@Donb2120 there's some NFC east and AFC North games on there I don't expect to pan out. No way Hou vs SF is the worst NBC game
@MattRichWarren oh who? The suspense is like watching the Bills/Dolphins Thursday night game!!!
@MattRichWarren they obviously dont like defensive classics! 6-3, Derek Anderson vs Edwards game
In the end, it'll be the Sunday Night Football game on December 29 that will be the most thrilling of them all #PlayoffImplications
Two Eagles games in the top 6??? I'm not so sure about that... Saints @ Seahawks seems like an underrated match up...
You really think the Chiefs at the Eagles is the 5th best out of all the prime time games. Really? Just because a coach is going back to where he used to coach? 2 crappy teams squaring off in Week 2 is not my idea of a good game.