San Francisco 49ers

Why the 49ers will again have a game moved 4 hours earlier than previously scheduled

When 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman plays against his former Seahawks team for the first time in Seattle, the game will not be on prime time. The NFL flexed the Dec. 2 matchup out in favor of Los Angeles Chargers at Pittsburgh Steelers.
When 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman plays against his former Seahawks team for the first time in Seattle, the game will not be on prime time. The NFL flexed the Dec. 2 matchup out in favor of Los Angeles Chargers at Pittsburgh Steelers. pkitagaki@sacbee.com

Richard Sherman’s return to play the Seattle Seahawks won’t come on the NFL’s largest television stage after all.

The 49ers, for the second time this season, had a prime-time NBC game flexed from Sunday evening to the afternoon. This time its the Week 13 game, when they travel to play the Seattle Seahawks on Dec. 2 at CenturyLink Field — a place they haven’t won at since December 2011.

Instead, the NFL placed the Los Angeles Chargers’ trip to play the Pittsburgh Steelers on NBC’s “Sunday Night Football” which kicks off at 5:20 p.m. Those teams are 13-4 combined heading into Week 11 and are currently in the No. 5 and No. 2 playoff seeds in the AFC, respectively.

Sherman has played well since joining San Francisco and will certainly have his return to play the Seahawks circled on his calendar following his messy exit from his former club following seven seasons in which he established himself as one of the best corners of his generation.

The 49ers (2-8) are entering their bye week coming off two consecutive prime-time games, both coming at home. They beat the struggling Raiders 34-3 Nov. 1 on NFL Network’s “Thursday Night Football” and then fell 27-23 to the New York Giants on ESPN’s “Monday Night Football” this week. Their next game will come at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Nov. 25.

San Francisco previously had its Week 7 tilt against the Los Angeles Rams flexed out of prime time. The 49ers were blown out at home 39-10 while the league went with the Kansas City Chiefs against the Cincinnati Bengals in a bout of two teams with winning records. The Chiefs won 45-10.

The 49ers instead will play their Week 13 game in Seattle at 1:25 p.m. and it will be aired on Fox.

Chris Biderman: @ChrisBiderman
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