What I Hope To See When The 2013 Regular Season Schedule Is Announced

The schedule will come out this Thursday, so in anticipation of it I have to look-see and wonder about what we'll get with regards to national viewing times (the afternoon and evening games).

Home: Falcons, Panthers, Saints, Cardinals, 49ers, Eagles, Bills and Dolphins.

Away: Falcons, Panthers, Saints, Rams, Seahawks, Lions, Patriots and Jets.

As a 7-9 team with some upside, there's a small but good chance the Bucs can get a Monday Night game. But to ensure it won't get blacked out a Monday Nighter will either be an obvious sell-out for a Home game or else an away. Right now, the ONLY Home sell-out we can be certain of would be the Saints game. The Eagles might cause a sell-out but there's no guarantee. Otherwise, we should expect a possible Monday Night match-up for an Away game against any of the South teams or else the Patriots (always a solid viewership draw).

More than likely we'll see a Sunday nighter, but again they're going to want to ensure a sell-out or packed stadium. If it's a home game it'll be the Saints again, with the Eagles again a likely alternative. Every Away game becomes a likely Sunday nighter.

The Thursday night NFL channel game is most likely going to be an NFC match-up, not a division game but one of the others. As such, if the Bucs do a Thursday night game for home expect the 49ers or the Cardinals. For the away game, expect the Rams.

The Sunday afternoon games can conceivably be the Seahawks and Rams away games or 49ers (but not the Cardinals unless they're 5-0 and FOX decides to switch start times with another game).

What I'm hoping for:

Monday Night game HOME vs. Saints in early October

Sunday Night game AWAY vs. Jets early November

No Thursday Nighters

First week an Away game vs. Panthers, no 1 pm games at home until late September or guaranteed cloud cover whichever comes first.

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