The NFL failed by not putting these 49ers games into prime time

The 49ers can't always be in the spotlight, but the NFL missed on these matchups not being nationally televised.
Super Bowl LVIII - San Francisco 49ers v Kansas City Chiefs
Super Bowl LVIII - San Francisco 49ers v Kansas City Chiefs / Focus On Sport/GettyImages

The 2024 San Francisco 49ers schedule has been released, and the reigning NFC champions will play a total of six primetime games, the maximum any team can play.

They'll begin the season at home versus quarterback Aaron Rodgers and the New York Jets on Monday Night Football, followed by primetime games against the Seattle Seahawks, Dallas Cowboys, Buffalo Bills, Los Angeles Rams and Detroit Lions.

If you weren't online in the past few days, here's the schedule:

For the most part, the primetime games are exciting. The season opener, two division rivals, a rematch of the NFC Championship game, the heated history with the Cowboys and an exciting cold December trip to Buffalo.

But the NFL really had a chance to make it better.

The NFL can change the primetime games which they go over here.

Still, the league whiffed by not putting these Niners matchups into prime time.

Week 7: 49ers vs. Chiefs (America's Game of the Week)

The NFL decided not to put the Super Bowl rematch in a primetime slot.

The highlighted games in Week 7 are:

  • Denver Broncos vs. New Orleans Saints: Thursday night
  • New York Jets vs. Pittsburgh Steelers: Sunday night
  • Baltimore Ravens vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers/ LA Chargers vs. Arizona Cardinals: Monday night

Understandably, every team gets to be showcased for the nation to see. But if you're going by storylines, none are bigger than the Chiefs and 49ers in Week 7.

Primetime change

To keep within the six games, the Niners could've had their Week 6 game against the Seahawks been an afternoon game to make way for this headliner.

Week 12: 49ers at Packers

This will be the first time since 2021 the Packers and 49ers face off in the regular season. Both teams met in the playoffs in 2022 and 2024 with San Francisco winning both games by a combined scored of six points.

The Packers went from a team reeling without their future Hall of Fame quarterback, Rodgers, to potentially finding their next generational signal-caller in Jordan Love.

Green Bay and San Francisco hate each other, especially over the last five years. Each game comes down to the wire, and with this game set for mid-November amid the cold weather at Lambeau Field, you can expect a nail-bitter.

Baltimore and the Chargers are scheduled for the Monday Night Football affair, but if both the Packers and Niners are in the heat of the playoff run a change could be made.

Read more: 6 games 49ers can already put into the win column in 2024

Primetime change

Unpopular opinion, but their home opener against the New York Jets could've been a normal time slot. Sure, the storyline of Rodgers and the 49ers will be on repeat, but there's nothing else about the game worthy of prime time.

Week 16: 49ers at Dolphins

This is the first time San Francisco will visit South Beach, Florida to face the Miami Dolphins since 2016.

This will be the second time former 49ers offensive coordinator, now-Miami head coach, Mike McDaniel, takes on his old team. He's 0-1 with a 33-17 loss in San Francisco back in 2022.

Both teams boast high-scoring offences worthy of being seen around the world. Last season, the Dolphins put up 70 points against the Denver Broncos, which almost broke an NFL record.

Meanwhile, the Niners counter with receivers Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk, with running back Christian McCaffery and quarterback Brock Purdy. If head coach Kyle Shanahan wanted, he could let his squad put up 70 points a game, but he often chooses to manage the clock with the lead.

Week 16 on the NFL schedule begins the Saturday games. San Francisco and Miami could've taken the spot held by Kansas City and the Houston Texans.

Primetime change

Week 15 against the Rams could determine who wins the NFC West. But if the division is locked up by the 49ers or another team, swap it out for the Dolphins the week after.

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