Tuesday, April 23, 2013
Top games of the 2013 NFL season
By Rick Morris
NOTE: This feature is serialized from PRO FOOTBALL DRAFTOLOGY 2013, your ultimate guide to this year’s NFL Draft.
1T San Francisco at Seattle (Sunday, September 15, NBC primetime) and Seattle at San Francisco (Sunday, December 8): This is now the early front-runner for best rivalry of the 2010s.
3 New England at Baltimore (Sunday, December 22, NBC primetime): The preeminent rivalry in the AFC over the past two seasons erupts again.
4 Denver at New York Giants (Sunday, September 15): This will probably be the final Manning Bowl.
5 Denver at Indianapolis (Sunday, October 20, NBC primetime): Peyton comes back to his old home to take on Andrew Luck? Wow!
6 Baltimore at Denver (Thursday, September 5 – Season Opener): Think the Broncos will be up for revenge much?
7 Denver at New England (Sunday, November 24, NBC primetime): At this stage of the game, any Peyton-Brady matchup could be the last one.
8 Atlanta at San Francisco (Monday, December 23, ESPN primetime): The rematch of the NFC Championship Game will take place in the home of the conference champions.
9 Houston at San Francisco (Sunday, October 6, NBC primetime): This is my early pick for the Super Bowl preview.
10 Seattle at Houston (Sunday, September 29): This is also a good bet for a Super Bowl preview.
11 Seattle at Atlanta (Sunday, November 10): Given another chance, the Hawks won’t play Matt Ryan so loosely in the last few minutes.
12 New England at Houston (Sunday, December 1): This will be a big test for the Texans as they try to work their way up the ladder of legitimate title contenders.
13T Given the intrigue with football’s toughest three-way battle for division supremacy, we’re including every game between Cincinnati, Pittsburgh and Baltimore (Monday, September 16, Pittsburgh at Cincinnati, ESPN primetime, Sunday, October 20, Baltimore at Pittsburgh, Sunday November 10, Cincinnati at Baltimore, Thanksgiving Thursday, November 28, Pittsburgh at Baltimore, NBC primetime, Sunday, December 15, Cincinnati at Pittsburgh, NBC primetime, Sunday, December 29, Baltimore at Cincinnati)
19 Green Bay at New York Giants (Sunday, November 17, NBC primetime): This battle of two of the last three Super Bowl champions matches incredible offenses and spotty defenses.
20 Green Bay at Baltimore (Sunday, October 13): This is the other battle of two of the last three Super Bowl champions, featuring two teams who have much to prove in 2013.
21 Seattle at Indianapolis (Sunday, October 6): It’s the first battle of two of the top QBs of the epic class of 2012, Luck and Russell Wilson.
22 Pittsburgh at Green Bay (Sunday, December 22): This rematch of Super Bowl 45 features two teams who haven’t even been back to Championship Sunday since then.
23 Green Bay at San Francisco (Sunday, September 8): The renewal of this great ‘90s rivalry is back in full force.
24 Indianapolis at San Francisco (Sunday, September 22): Along the lines of Luck vs. Wilson, how much do you like Luck vs. Colin Kaepernick?
25 Pittsburgh at New England (Sunday, November 3): This was a great, albeit one-sided rivalry in the 2000s and still means something in the AFC hierarchy.
^ both New York Giants/Dallas games (New York at Dallas Sunday, September 8, NBC primetime and Dallas at New York, Sunday, November 24)
^ both Houston/Indianapolis games (Sunday, November 3, Indianapolis at Houston, NBC primetime, Sunday, December 15, Houston at Indianapolis
^ both Green Bay/Chicago games (Monday, November 4, Chicago at Green Bay, Sunday, December 29, Green Bay at Chicago)
^ New England at Atlanta (Sunday, September 29)
^ Green Bay at Cincinnati (Sunday, September 22)
^ New England at Cincinnati (Sunday, October 6)
^ Houston at Denver (Sunday, December 22)
^ San Francisco at New Orleans (Sunday, November 17)
^ Houston at Baltimore (Sunday, September 22)