It’s now official: the Green Bay Packers will play for the chance to make the playoffs in prime time. On Monday afternoon, the NFL announced the full schedule for week 18, revealing that the Packers will host the Detroit Lions on Sunday Night Football. Kickoff for the game is now set for 7:20 PM Central Time on January 8.
The Packers-Lions game is not necessarily a winner-gets-in matchup, but the Packers are at least facing the chance to clinch the #7 seed with a victory. The Lions, meanwhile, would need the Seattle Seahawks to lose to the Los Angeles Rams in order to have a chance at the postseason; the Seahawks-Rams game will kick off at 1:25 PM Pacific (3:25 PM Central) on FOX.
It has been a magical run for the Packers over the past five weeks, as they ripped off four straight wins after entering week 13 at 4-8. They have received significant help in the playoff run from multiple other games across the NFC, getting four results to go their way on Christmas Eve and seeing one final domino fall on Sunday, the Washington Commanders’ loss to the Cleveland Browns. That has set up the Packers to have the opportunity to lock up the final NFC playoff spot should they beat the Lions on Sunday.
This will be the second consecutive year that the Packers-Lions matchup at Lambeau Field will be played in prime time. The two teams played on Monday Night Football in the 2021 season, meeting early on in week two. This will also be the Packers’ fourth appearance on Sunday Night Football this season; they went 1-2 in the other three games, beating the Chicago Bears at home in week two before losing at Buffalo in week 8 and at Philadelphia in week 12.
Sunday’s game will be televised on NBC, with Mike Tirico and Cris Collinsworth in the booth and Melissa Stark on the sidelines.