A BATTLE FOR FIRST PLACE IN THE NFC NORTH AS BEARS AND VIKINGS CLASH ON "NBC SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL"
"There's nothing like the end of the season with division rivals tied for the lead." � NBC's Madden
NEW YORK � Nov. 26, 2008 � "NBC Sunday Night Football," in its third season as the NFL's premier primetime package, heads to Minneapolis as Adrian Peterson and the Vikings (6-5) host Brian Urlacher and the Bears (6-5) in a battle of the two teams atop the NFC North. Al Michaels (play-by-play), John Madden (analyst) and Andrea Kremer (sideline reporter) call the action. Coverage on NBC begins at 7 p.m. ET with "Football Night in America," with Bob Costas (host), Cris Collinsworth (co-host) Keith Olbermann (co-host), Dan Patrick (co-host), Jerome Bettis (analyst), Tiki Barber (analyst) and Peter King (reporter).
MADDEN ON THE RIVALRY: "It's going to be a typical old Central Division game. You're going to get a lot of defense and a lot of emotion. They are playing for first place and that's what it's all about. There's nothing like the end of the season with division rivals tied for the lead."
BEARS-VIKINGS IN PRIMETIME: The Bears are making their second 2008 appearance on NBC "Sunday Night Football." In Week 4, the Bears defeated the Eagles 24-20 at Soldier Field. They are now 4-2 overall since the NFL's premier primetime package moved to NBC in 2006. This marks the Vikings first "NBC SNF" appearance this season and their second all-time. Last season in Week 16 they lost to the Redskins 32-21 in a flex game.
BEARS VS. VIKINGS: This is the 95th meeting between these two franchises in a rivalry that dates back to 1961 with the Vikings holding a 50-42-2 series lead. The Vikings and Bears met in Week 7 in Chicago with the Bears winning a thriller 47-41. In that game Bears QB Kyle Orton threw for 283 yards and two touchdowns while the Bears defense intercepted Vikings QB Gus Frerotte four times.
MADDEN, BACK IN JULY, ON WARREN SAPP'S CHANCES IN DANCING WITH THE STARS (Sapp was runner-up): "He dances. He's going to be good. I'm predicting he'll win it. I'll take on all comers."
SNF FLEXES: The NFL announced a flex change in the "Sunday Night Football" schedule. On December 7, the Washington Redskins (7-4) take on the Baltimore Ravens (7-4) as each team battles for a playoff spot in their respective conference.
"SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL EXTRA": Each "Sunday Night Football" game is available on NBC as well as streamed live on NFL.com and NBCSports.com, marking the first time complete NFL games will be widely available in the U.S. via live online streaming.
The live NFL.com and NBCSports.com coverage comes from NBC's TV coverage of Sunday Night Football. Complementing that stream are a number of extra features to enrich the viewing experience including additional camera angles, in-game highlights, picture-in-picture technology, live statistics and other interactive elements. "Sunday Night Football Extra" also includes in-game studio updates from NBC's "Football Night in America" team and NFL Network.
ROTOWORLD.COM'S WEEK 13 SLEEPER PICKS: Rotoworld.com managing editor Gregg Rosenthal, who was named 2007 Fantasy Football Writer of the Year by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association, picks his fantasy sleepers for Week 13.
1. David Garrard vs. Texans: "The Jaguars QB is in a slump, but Houston is the ultimate slump-buster."
2. Shaun Hill vs. Bills: "Buffalo struggles against short passing attacks. That's Hill's specialty."
3. Willis McGahee vs. Bengals: "The wheel o' Ravens running back will stop on McGahee in a great matchup."
4. LenDale White/Brandon Jones/Justin Gage vs. Lions: "Because it wouldn't hurt to make Titans-Lions more interesting on Thanksgiving."
5. Zach Miller vs. Chiefs: "Forty yards in six of his last seven games and ready for a breakout against the poor Chiefs safeties."
TASTE OF THE NFL SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL COOKBOOK BRUNCH IN MINNESOTA: This Sunday, executive chef Mark Haugen of Tejas in Minneapolis, will host The Taste of the NFL Sunday Night Football Cookbook Brunch to raise money for the Second Harvest Heartland. Tickets cost $30 and can be purchased by calling 952-926-0800.
Taste of the NFL is the premier food and wine event at Super Bowl, a "party with a purpose" that raises awareness and funds for hunger-relief organizations including Feeding America and its affiliates nationwide. Since 1992, Taste of the NFL has donated more than $10 million to local and national hunger-relief organizations.
CHICAGO & MINNESOTA COOK UP SUNDAY NIGHT MEALS: The "Sunday Night Football" Cookbook features recipes from NFL stars including Bears' TE Desmond Clark who offers his Garlicky Baked Chicken Breast recipe and Vikings' LB Chad Greenway who contributes his Chicken Noodle Soup recipe. The Sunday Night Football Cookbook also features recipes from prominent chefs from each NFL city including Chicago's Susan Goss of West Town Tavern and Zinfandel restaurants and Minnesota's Mark Haugen of Tejas.
Bobby Flay and Emeril Lagasse represent their favorite NFL teams and NBC's "Sunday Night Football" crew have added their favorite Sunday Night recipes to the Cookbook. Faith Hill and John Madden not only provide some of their favorite recipes, but also write special introductions. The book contains full meals and a section on Super Bowl parties, just in time for the next Super Bowl on NBC. Proceeds from the cookbook, which is available wherever books are sold or at SundayNightFootballCookbook.com, go to support local food banks across the U.S. through Feeding America (formerly America's Second Harvest).
SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL: Al Michaels, the commentator called "TV's best play-by-play announcer" by the Associated Press, is joined in the "Sunday Night Football" booth by John Madden, the most honored NFL broadcaster of all time with 16 Emmy Awards, and on the sidelines by Andrea Kremer, whom the Los Angeles Times has called "the best TV interviewer in the business of covering the NFL."
"FOOTBALL NIGHT IN AMERICA": The Washington Post calls NBC's "Football Night in America" studio show the "Gold Standard" of NFL studio shows and "must-see television for NFL fans." Bob Costas, the most honored studio host of all time with 19 Emmy Awards, hosts "Football Night in America" alongside co-host Cris Collinsworth, the most honored studio analyst in history; co-host Keith Olbermann, named one of the Top Ten Most Powerful People in TV News for 2007 by Television Week; newcomer and co-host Dan Patrick, reuniting him with Olbermann who together redefined sports highlights during their time together on ESPN's SportsCenter from 1992-97; and analysts Tiki Barber, a three-time NFL Pro Bowler for the New York Giants, and Jerome Bettis, one of the most popular players in recent NFL history. Peter King, who covers the NFL for Sports Illustrated and is considered one of the country's foremost NFL reporters, serves as a reporter for the "Football Night in America" studio show.
NBC's REMAINING 2008 NFL SCHEDULE:
("NBC Sunday Night Football" kickoff, 8:15 p.m. ET preceded by "Football Night in America," 7 p.m. ET)
Sunday, Nov. 30 � Chicago at Minnesota (Flex Week, No Change)
Sunday, Dec. 7 � Washington at Baltimore (Flex Game)
Sunday, Dec. 14 � New York Giants at Dallas (Flex Week, Teams Subject to Change)
Sunday, Dec. 21 � San Diego at Tampa Bay (Flex Week, Teams Subject to Change)
Sunday, Dec. 28 � Flex Week � teams TBA