The NFL’s 2019 schedule will be released on Wednesday. We already know who the Seahawks will be playing we still aren’t sure when and where.
With the Seahawks be an annual big draw for the NFL, expect them to get plenty of exposure in the league’s prime spots. Here’s a look at which games will be under the bright lights in 2019:
Prime time locks
Los Angeles Rams (Home/Away)
Since the Rams are the reigning NFC champs, expect them to be in prime time during 2019. A lot. And you can almost guarantee one of those games will be against their NFC West rivals. I won’t be surprised if we see these two teams play in the season opener for Monday Night Football or even a Sunday Night Football game in the season’s first month.
Carolina Panthers (Away)
The two teams played one of the more dramatic games back in 2018 and now the Seahawks return to the scene of their 30-27 victory in Carolina. One thing the NFL likes to do is take some of the best games from the previous season and showcase the rematch. The league could be bold to put this on a Sunday night and there will be a small amount of complaints. This honestly has the feel for Thursday Night Football. A nice matchup to get the football weekend started.
Cleveland Browns (Away)
Wanna get weird? The Seattle Seahawks going on the road to play the Cleveland Browns in prime time.
One of the biggest moments this offseason was the shocking trade that brought Odell Beckham Jr. to the Cleveland Browns. When you factor in their young and exciting core of talent, the Browns are actually trying to compete and they’re good?
Seattle has been one of the more consistent teams in the league over the past decade so a prime time matchup makes sense here. My guess is that this is a sure fire mid-season Monday night game. Just early enough into the season where the NFL and ESPN can capture their audience and not have it come off as a dud.
Philadelphia Eagles (Away)
A year removed from a Super Bowl title, the Eagles are still a team that will get prime time coverage. When you pair them up with one a consistent threat in the NFC, you’re going to get multiple chances to put a Seahawks-Eagles game in prime time. The two teams last met on Sunday Night Football back in 2017 and I’d bet they could be in that same spot again this coming season.
Potential prime time games
New Orleans Saints (Home)
The Saints, like the Eagles, are perennial contenders in the NFC. This game may be pushed to prime time but don’t be shocked if this game is apart of a late-afternoon window on FOX.
Minnesota Vikings (Home)
Last season, these two teams hooked up on a Monday night with Seattle getting the 21-7 victory. Minnesota missed out on the playoffs so this season’s rematch doesn’t carry the appeal that the 2018 game did. Easy candidate for the late afternoon window on Sunday. If both teams are good or at least one is capturing early headlines, this could have “flex to Sunday night” potential.
Baltimore Ravens (Home)
Now that Lamar Jackson is firmly the man in Baltimore, time to match him against Russell Wilson in a Sunday afternoon showdown. It could get a prime time slot but these two work better as a lead-in to Sunday Night Football.
Pittsburgh Steelers (Away)
Steelers hosting the Seahawks in prime time? Not as simple as you’d think.
The Steelers have been sliding down a slippery slope of mediocrity in the past few seasons and it has seem to be sped up thanks to former Steeler Antonio Brown’s eventful exit this spring. The Steelers are still a big draw for TV audiences but this has early kick on CBS or FOX written all over it.
San Francisco 49ers (Home/Away)
If I were to buy stock in teams this season, I’d invest in the San Francisco 49ers.
They were hit by the injury bug last season, most notable Jerick McKinnon and Jimmy Garoppolo. Better health in 2019 and you could imagine them challenging Seattle for the second spot in the NFC West.
I don’t expect any Sunday or Monday night games but that doesn’t mean we could get it flexed in.
Atlanta Falcons (Away)
How the mighty have fallen. From a losing a 25-point lead in the Super Bowl to being an afterthought in the NFC altogether. There is a chance for an early season showdown between the battle of the birds but don’t expect it to get any prime time love.
Longshots for prime time
Arizona Cardinals (Home/Away)
New Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury is appealing for prime time. Aside from that? Nada.
Short of grabbing Kyler Murray and getting a quarterback for the second-straight season in the NFL Draft, this is probably a set of games that won’t get much love .... and it doesn’t deserve it, either.
Cincinnati Bengals (Home)
The Bengals are a team in transition. Judging by previous history with the Cincinnati Bengals, they could be in for a long and painful journey for a while. You don’t want to see this team at all, let alone, in prime time.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Home)
Tampa Bay is the NFC’s version of the Bengals; they’ve been in transition for almost four seasons now. Outside of the team’s home states, no one is going to watch this game.