NFL shifts Patriots game at Buffalo on Nov. 18 to prime time

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- The Patriots' run at a perfect record is going prime time.

The league pushed back the start of New England's game at the Buffalo Bills on Nov. 18 to 8:15 p.m. and the broadcast will move from CBS to NBC. Originally, Patriots-Bills contest was set for 1 p.m. on CBS, while Chicago at Seattle was the night game.

Chicago will now play at Seattle at 4:15 p.m. on Fox.

The switch comes in the first week of the NFL's flexible television schedule period this season, a new wrinkle in the league's broadcast policy that came into effect last year. The flex schedule was negotiated into the new TV contract to ensure contending teams play in prime time late in the season.

There's no contending team hotter than the Patriots (9-0), who are coming off a come-from-behind 24-20 win at the previously undefeated Indianapolis Colts on Sunday. New England, which has a bye this week, is attempting to become the second team to post a perfect record, and first since the 1972 Miami Dolphins.

The Bills (4-4), who play at winless Miami this weekend, are suddenly on a roll following a 33-21 win against Cincinnati. The Bills have won three straight and four of five since opening the season 0-3, including a 38-7 loss at New England in Week 3.

The switch means the Patriots will play three consecutive prime-time games. They host Philadelphia on Sunday night, Nov. 25, and then play a Monday nighter at Baltimore the following week. New England also closes its schedule with a Saturday night game at the New York Giants on Dec. 29.

New England has played two prime-time games already this season, hosting San Diego on Sept. 16 and playing at Cincinnati on Oct. 1.

It will be the second prime-time appearance this season for the Bills, following a Monday night meltdown on Oct. 8, when Buffalo allowed nine points in the final 20 seconds in a 25-24 loss to Dallas.

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press

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