The NFL’s Week 16 Sunday night game — an originally scheduled game between the Chargers and Bengals — has been replaced by an NFC match-up between the Eagles and the Vikings. San Diego and Cincinnati has been moved to 4:05 EST, while the Eagles and Vikings will play during the usual Sunday night slot at 8:20 EST.
The NFL instituted flex scheduling in 2006 as a means of featuring more compelling games in its prime time block on Sunday. According to the league, it allows games with playoff implications or games involving surprise teams to be showcased and eliminates featuring games between 2-11 teams that are completely out of the playoff hunt.
Flex scheduling is placed into effect from Week 11 through the remainder of the season, with games scheduled to be played on Thursday, Saturday, or Monday exempt from being moved. Moving the Chargers-Bengals match-up certainly makes sense with the way the Bengals’ season has turned out, but the choice of its replacement is questionable. While there is the obvious draw of Michael Vick — just ask Tashard Choice — the Vikings are all but eliminated from the playoff contention.