Lamar Jackson

Monday Night Football Comes to Playoffs

Beginning with 2021, the new 14-team playoffs will extend to Monday Night Football. Instead of three games on Saturday, there will now be two games Saturday, three games on Sunday, and then one game Monday night. Hopefully, the league will be able to limit the damage to competitive balance for the Monday night game that has to play on a short week. (It's a shorter week than playing Sunday in the daytime and then the following Saturday, because Monday Night Football goes late.) What do you think of this change?

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11 comments, Last at 26 Sep 2021, 11:51am

1 The Monday winner and, in a…

I'm all for it but...

The Monday winner and, in a fair world, the Sunday night winner should play on the following Sunday.  That may produce matchups/games that would be less than ideal for the networks.

3 I'm ambivalent

I'm ok with this - I think its better from a viewer experience (I'll take a primetime game over a 1pm Saturday game).

However they need to make it so the team isn't at a really bad disadvantage and I think in the new scenario there's no easy way to do it.

I think the only way to ensure the Monday winner plays on Sunday is to make both the Sunday divisional games from the same conference, and make sure that same conference is playing the Monday Wild Card game.

I don't know if that's ever happened though - both divisional games for a conference played on the same day rather than 1 AFC and 1 NFC. I know it's happened in the Wild Card round (12 team playoff) but can't remember that ever happening in the Divisional round.

4 I don't like it for three…

I don't like it for three reasons:

1) Change is bad. (And I like consecutive couch marathons on weekend days, especially when the weather is awful.)

2) The Monday game will probably be on some cable channel or streaming thingamabob I don't get.

3) The competitive balance issue already discussed.

5 Unless Disney/ABC/ESPN…

Unless Disney/ABC/ESPN allows the Monday night game to be shown on broadcast TV, it stinks. But then again, watering down the playoffs by adding two more teams makes it all less special anyway.

9 I guess I don't see the…

I guess I don't see the issue here.  Monday Night Football is already on ESPN, and last year's wildcard round had one of the games on ESPN (if this article is to be believed, and I don't see why it wouldn't be).

EDIT: Oops, that link is from the year before.  Last year, ESPN and Nick were simulcasts with broadcast TV.

6 I like it personally.

Give me something to watch on Monday over Saturday noon games.

Also don't think the "balance" issue will be as bad as people think. They were already playing Saturday winners on Sunday and Sunday winners on Saturday (total 2 day difference not quite fair when the season is winding down) among the other balance issues in the regular season. Players/teams adapt. They'll be fine in the end. If it's not working, we'll cross that bridge when we get to it. They can definitely take their time to set the schedule in the best way possible. 

7 Sucks for West Coast folks

It would suck if one of the teams playing the MNF game is a West Coast team. MNF kicks off at 5:15 PM PT, meaning many of the team's fans will be commuting home for the first half instead of watching it. It may help scheduling should both LA teams make the playoffs and need a home game the same weekend. West Coast home teams may be at a severe disadvantage with fans drifting in during much of the first half.