Dolphins at Chargers Week 14 game flexed to Sunday night; Chiefs at Broncos moved to former slot

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SATISFACTION

A change has been made to the NFL regular season schedule. The Chargers’ Week 14 game against the Dolphins has been moved to the “Sunday Night Football” game. In a similar move, the Chiefs-Broncos game in Denver will be moved from 8:20 PM ET to a 4:05 ET kickoff.

The Dolphins’ success, coupled with the Broncos’ struggles, likely both played large roles in the schedule change. Winners of five straight games, the Dolphins are 8-3 overall under first-year head coach Mike McDaniel. The Dolphins have yet to lose this season when Tua Tagovailoa starts and finishes the game. Miami’s quarterback leads one of the league’s most explosive offenses that also features wideouts Jaylen Waddle and Tyreek Hill. Hill, who is in his first season in Miami, is 767 yards away from becoming the first receiver to eclipse the 2,000-yard receiving barrier.

While the Dolphins are soaring, the Broncos are on their way through what will ultimately be the franchise’s eighth straight season outside the playoffs. It’s been a forgettable season for Russell Wilson, who certainly hasn’t had the type of first season in Denver that he and Broncos fans had hoped for. Wilson, a nine-time Pro Bowler in Seattle, is completing less than 60% of his passes this season. Denver’s currently 14.3 points per game is the lowest total this late in a season since the 2000 Browns (h/t ESPN).

The schema flex has historical significance. The Dolphins-Chargers game will take place nearly 40 years after their epic showdown in the 1982 divisional round of the AFC playoffs. Ahead 24-0, the Chargers fell behind before rallying to force overtime. The Chargers then prevailed in overtime in a game that ranks among the best in league history.

Miami’s Week 14 opponent is no slouch either. The 6-5 Chargers, fresh off their last-second win at Arizona, are in the hunt to make the playoffs. Los Angeles has been led by quarterback Justin Herbert and Austin Ekeler. Herbert is in the midst of another Pro Bowl-caliber season. Ekeler, arguably the league’s most versatile running back, has gained 1,051 total yards and 12 touchdowns through 11 games.

The team that really got the short end of the stick is the Chiefs, who at 9-2 did nothing to warrant losing a primetime game.

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