Indianapolis visits Jacksonville on Thursday Night Football followed by a special Saturday edition when New Orleans hosts Dallas
Deion Sanders, Marshall Faulk, Steve Mariucci and Rich Eisen go on the road for the pregame show from the Superdome on Saturday
NFL Network adds 20.5 hours of special Colts-Jaguars and Saints-Cowboys programming to schedule this week
Two 13-0 teams pursuing perfection and two teams battling for playoff spots are featured this week on NFL Network's Thursday Night Football schedule.
MVP candidate Peyton Manningleads the unbeaten Indianapolis Colts into Jacksonville to face Maurice Jones-Drew and the Jaguars, who are fighting to stay in the hunt for an AFC playoff spot, on Thursday, Dec. 17 at 8 p.m. ET. Thursday Night Kickoff Presented by Sears pregame show begins at 6 p.m. ET from the studio in Los Angeles.
A special Saturday edition of Thursday Night Football on Dec. 19 at 8 p.m. ET features Tony Romo and the Dallas Cowboys looking to improve their NFC playoff position when they travel to New Orleans to take on Drew Brees and the undefeated Saints. The high-scoring Saints can move closer to homefield advantage throughout the NFC playoffs with a victory.
Bob Papa (play-by-play) and Matt Millen (analyst) call the action on both games for NFL Network this week.
For the Saturday game, NFL Network's Thursday Night Kickoff Presented by Sears pregame show goes on location to the Superdome. Host Rich Eisen will be joined by analysts Deion Sanders, Steve Mariucci and New Orleans native Marshall Faulk on the field for the two-hour pregame show starting at 6 p.m. ET followed by the halftime and postgame shows. Thursday Night Kickoff includes a feature on Brees meeting New Orleans music legend and Saints fan Harry Connick Jr.
In addition to the games on Thursday and Saturday, NFL Network is adding 20.5 hours of special programming to the schedule as well as focusing on the matchups on the nightly NFL Total Access at 7 and 10 p.m. ET. On Tuesday night, Dec. 15, NFL Replay features the Colts' win over the Broncos from Sunday at 8 p.m. ET, followed by the Saints' three-point victory over the Falcons at 9:30 p.m. ET. Playbook, the weekly X's and O's show that uses coaches tape to analyze the matchups, on Wednesday at 6 p.m. ET will be dedicated entirely to the Colts-Jaguars and Cowboys-Saints games. Brian Billick, Mike Mayock and Solomon Wilcots are featured on Playbook on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Two new NFL Films produced half-hour shows make their debut this week on Friday night. Path to Perfection: 2009 Indianapolis Colts begins at 8 p.m. ET followed by Path to Perfection: 2009 New Orleans Saints at 9 p.m. ET. These shows feature the award-winning NFL Films behind-the-scenes footage and exclusive sound from the Colts and the Saints from this memorable season.
The following is the schedule of the additional shows featuring the four teams on NFL Network's schedule this week:
Thursday, Dec. 17:
1:30 p.m. ET -- NFL Replay - Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Indianapolis Colts (Sept. 21, 2008) - David Garrard answers Peyton Manning's fourth-quarter come-from-behind drive with one of his own, leading the Jaguars 47 yards in the final minute to set up the game-winning field goal.
3 p.m. ET -- Super Bowl XLI: Indianapolis Colts vs. Chicago Bears - Peyton Manning leads the Indianapolis Colts past the Chicago Bears and wins Super Bowl MVP honors.
Friday, Dec. 18:
Saturday, Dec. 19:
7:30 a.m. ET -- America's Game: 1992 Dallas Cowboys - Re-live the story of the 1992 Cowboys through the eyes of Troy Aikman, Michael Irvin and Ken Norton Jr. The 1992 Cowboys were voted as the fifth greatest Super Bowl-winning team of all-time by a panel of football experts. Narrated by Alec Baldwin.
10:30 a.m. ET -- NFL Replay - Carolina Panthers vs. New Orleans Saints (Nov. 8, 2009) - The Saints score 24 points in the second half to rally past the Panthers in New Orleans. Drew Brees passed for 330 yards and a touchdown.
12 p.m. ET -- NFL Replay - New England Patriots vs. New Orleans Saints (Nov. 30, 2009) - In a battle of two of the top offenses, New Orleans outlasts the Patriots for a 38-17 victory. QB Drew Brees passed for 371 yards and five touchdowns in the win.
3:30 p.m. ET -- Game Changers: New Orleans - Drew Brees and Harry Connick Jr. - Follow Harry Connick Jr.'s trip to his old stomping grounds in New Orleans and witness his much-anticipated encounter with QB Drew Brees following the Saints' thrilling MNF victory over the Patriots.