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‘Sunday Night Football’ open thread: Giants at Commanders

We root for a tie.

Washington Football Team v New York Giants Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

It’s a game with massive playoff implications not only for the teams at play but also for the Detroit Lions. It’s “Sunday Night Football,” let’s root for chaos.

Our Week 15 rooting guide breaks down the possibilities in full detail, but the gist of it is that the New York Giants and Washington Commanders tying in Week 13 threw a wrench in the Lions playoff chances. Despite Detroit beating both teams, the tie all but eliminated that tiebreaker. Whereas Detroit’s original best route to the playoffs was for one of them to implode, the Lions now need both teams to flounder their way to the finish. The best case scenario? Yet another tie, coupled with the Lions’ victory over the Jets today, would boost their playoff odds tremendously.

The Commanders are coming off a late Week 14 bye, so it will be back-to-back games against the division-rival Giants. Taylor Heinicke will remain the starter in Washington despite the activation of Carson Wentz. All things considered, it’s not hard to see why. It hasn’t been the prettiest of hot streaks, but the Commanders have quietly gone 6-1-1 since Week 6. That being said, the wins are largely due to the defense, which has caught fire of late.

The Giants, meanwhile, are going in the opposite direction. Having started the season 6-1, the Giants have since fallen to 7-5-1. A blowout loss to the Philadelphia Eagles last week—a team that was handed its only loss by the Commanders—has the Giants desperately clinging to a Wild Card spot. With the Seahawks and Lions nipping at their heels, a loss against the Commanders would further jeopardize their playoff odds.

Here is how to watch tonight’s game:

Date: Sunday, December 18, 2022
Time: 8:20 p.m. ET
Location: FedExField—Landover, MD
TV: NBC
Announcers: Mike Tirico, Cris Collinsworth, and Melissa Stark
Online: NBCSports.com