For the first time in 2019, the Green Bay Packers have had a game time moved as part of the NFL’s flexible scheduling policy. Week ten will see the Packers hosting the Carolina Panthers, who currently sit 4-3 and in second place in the NFC South. That game was originally scheduled to kick off at 12 noon Central Time, but the league and its broadcasting partners are shifting it back.
The news comes first from ESPN’s Adam Schefter, who reports that the game will move back to a 3:25 PM CT start time. The change was likely driven in large part by FOX, which has the rights to that game and has the doubleheader in week 10. Initially, however, their only game in the later time slot was the Rams at Steelers, and given Pittsburgh’s struggles that game is unlikely to draw significant ratings.
Enter the Packers and Panthers, which will likely be sent out over the air to most homes outside of the Los Angeles and Pittsburgh markets.
Week 10 is a tough one for the NFL’s Sunday daytime schedule in general, as several playoff contenders are on byes. Houston, New England, and Philadelphia are among the idle teams that week, and Green Bay-Carolina is the only non-prime time game that matches up two teams that are currently over .500 through week 8. Meanwhile, the two other excellent matchups come on Sunday Night Football and Monday Night Football, with the Vikings in Dallas on NBC and the 49ers hosting the Seahawks to wrap up the week.
Given the Packers’ strong first half and a heavy dose of early games remaining on the schedule, chances are decent that the team could get flexed out for another game or two. In particular, keep an eye on their week 12 game against the 49ers, which could be moved back from a 3:25 Central Time kickoff to Sunday Night Football.