Our weekly look at the network broadcast distribution of NFL games, courtesy of the gang at the506.com
. The broadcast maps provide some interesting insight into which games the networks believe provide the most national interest and value.
A compelling Cincinnati-San Diego match-up with playoff implications draws the network's top crew of Nantz-Simms, but only limited distribution in a crowded slate of games. Miami-Tennessee generates widespread coverage in the eastern half of the country and Oakland-Denver gets similar distribution in the western half of the country, while the Patriots-Bills AFC East battle is covered by the No. 2 crew of Gumbel-Dierdorf.
The 49ers appeared on primetime national television last week for what felt like the first time since Steve Young ran the offense. They get near national coverage again this week for their cross-country jaunt to Philadelphia. Fox's No. 2 crew of Albert-Johnson-Sausage Boy calls the game.
Packers-Steelers lost some of its luster as Pittsburgh has faltered in recent weeks. But Green Bay remains one of our Super Bowl dark horses
and the battle is still good enough to generate near national coverage and massively overshadow the awful Bucs-Hawks battle in Seattle. Buck-Aikman call the big game and fail to get the Cowboys draw for the second week in a row (Dallas plays primetime Saturday against New Orleans). We just hope somebody changes the sheets on their beds in the Dallas Stadium press box before they get back.