Update: The NFL has made the head-scratching decision to flex Chiefs-Broncos to Sunday Night Football instead of Chargers-Bengals.
The LA Chargers just defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers in arguably the most exciting Sunday Night Football game of the season. With a big lead in the fourth quarter, the Chargers did typical Chargers things, allowing the Steelers to come back and forcing Justin Herbert to put together a game-winning drive.
The Chargers are not on Sunday Night Football very often. This was just the third time in the last four years that the Bolts played on Sunday night and all three games have been against the Steelers. Prior to that, the Bolts last game on Sunday Night Football was in 2014 against the New England Patriots.
It appears that the Chargers may not have to wait long for their next game on Sunday night and that it will come against yet another AFC North opponent. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Chargers Week 13 game against the Cincinnati Bengals might get flexed into primetime.
It is a smart move by the NFL to flex out the Seahawks and 49ers as that is a game that America has seen enough and does not have the same implications as expected. While the 49ers are still in the playoff hunt, the Seahawks' playoff chances are all but dead this season with a 3-7 record and Russell Wilson playing horribly.
The other option isn't as intriguing, either. Sure, the Chiefs are always a candidate to play in primetime but we have seen them in primetime already so much this season. And does the league really want to put a blowout against the Broncos on primetime? Probably not.
The Chargers vs. Bengals narratives write themselves for Sunday Night Football
Joe Burrow vs. Justin Herbert. The two best quarterbacks from the 2020 NFL Draft are facing off against each other for the very first time. Two explosive offenses facing off against two defenses that are not that good.
If anything, it will be an entertaining game. Just look at what Herbert did on primetime against the Pittsburgh Steelers. He became the first quarterback ever to throw for 350 yards and rush for 90. He has been money in every single primetime game he has played this season. This is what a primetime matchup should be.
The Bengals also have not played on Sunday Night Football since 2018, so it is a good chance to showcase one of the league's young and upcoming contenders that should be in the mix for several years to come.
And selfishly, as an LA Chargers fan, playing the Bengals on Sunday Night Football is better than a 1 p.m. game on the East Coast. Not only does it help the West Coast-based team, but the Bengals have never won on Sunday Night Football, sporting an 0-11 record.