The San Francisco 49ers PR staff informed the assembled media earlier this afternoon that the team's Week 14 game with the Seattle Seahawks will NOT be flexed into Sunday Night Football. The game is currently scheduled for 1:25 p.m. PT on FOX. The current SNF contest that weekend is Falcons-Packers. Christian Gin had these tweets:
Per @49ersPR, the #49ers #Seahawks game will not be flexed to Sunday night Football. It will stay an afternoon game on December 8th.— Christian Gin (@Christian_Gin) November 6, 2013
The reason: FOX would be angry to not air a #Seahawks- #49ers game. They haven't aired one since 2011.— Christian Gin (@Christian_Gin) November 6, 2013
Also having the #Seahawks and #49ers twice on Sunday Night Football would be a crime for FOX, per @49ersPR— Christian Gin (@Christian_Gin) November 6, 2013
While it is disappointing, it also makes sense. The NFL has a lot of leverage over the networks, but there is no reason to completely alienate them. 49ers-Seahawks would do great ratings for SNF, but it will likely be the national game that week on FOX, and should do plenty good ratings then as well. The rest of that Week 14 afternoon FOX schedule includes Giants-Chargers and Rams-Cardinals.
I'm pretty sure 49ers-Seahawks will get FOX's No. 1 crew, and relatively national coverage. Unfortunately, San Diego, New York City/northern NJ, St. Louis and Phoenix would not get the 49ers game.