For the first time this season, COVID-19 has forced a shift in the weekly NFL schedule.
The Browns were originally scheduled to host the Raiders on Saturday as the first game of an NFL Network doubleheader. But during the past week, more than 20 Browns, including head coach Kevin Stefanski, quarterback Baker Mayfield and backup Case Keenum, tested positive for the coronavirus and were forced to be placed on the COVID list. The league made the decision, along with two other games, to postpone it.
So NFL fans will get not one, but two games on Monday, with the Raiders-Browns scheduled to start at 5 p.m. ET followed by the regularly scheduled “Monday Night Football” matchup featuring the Vikings and the Bears.
MORE: NFL players sound off on postponements amid COVID outbreak
The AFC clash is a pivotal one for both teams. The Browns are riding high after a win against the Ravens to move within a game of the AFC North division lead, and they entered Week 15 tied with the Colts, Bills, Bengals and Broncos at 7-6, though find themselves outside the playoff picture in the eighth spot behind Indianapolis and Buffalo. The Raiders are fourth in the AFC West after having lost five of their past six games, but still are 6-7 and have an outside shot of grabbing a wild card.
In the NFC North matchup, the Bears are on the brink of playoff elimination at 4-9, but they could play spoiler to the Vikings, who, like the Browns, entered the week at eighth in the NFC’s playoff picture and could still make a run at the playoffs. Minnesota is coming off a 36-28 win against the Steelers to move to 6-7 on the year.
Sporting News has you covered with all you need to know to watch the two games on Monday.
What time are the NFL games tonight?
- Date: Monday, Dec. 20
- Matchup: Raiders at Browns
- Location: FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland, Ohio
- Start time: 5 p.m. ET
- Date: Monday, Dec. 20
- Matchup: Vikings at Bears
- Location: Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois
- Start time: 8:15 p.m. ET
The Raiders and Browns were originally slated to play on Saturday as the first of a Week 15 doubleheader, ending with the Patriots-Colts’ game. However, due to a spike in COVID cases with the Browns, the NFL opted to push the matchup back to Monday. The Rams-Seahawks and Washington-Eagles games were also pushed back to Tuesday for a similar reason. The matchup will be on the NFL Network, with a scheduled kickoff of 5 p.m. ET.
The Vikings-Bears game will remain the “Monday Night Football” matchup, as was originally scheduled, with the game set to air on ESPN. It will also be carried by ABC and will be streamable through ESPN+. Kickoff is scheduled for 8:15 p.m. ET.
MORE: Are Jarvis Landry, Austin Hooper playing in Week 15?
What channel is ‘Monday Night Football’ on tonight?
Raiders vs. Browns
- TV channel: NFL Network
- Live stream: fuboTV
Though not an official “Monday Night Football” game, this matchup will be one of the two clashes taking place on Monday. The game was originally slated to be held on Saturday with NFL Network handling broadcast duties.
Joe Davis and Kurt Warner will be in the booth, with Melissa Stark and Steve Wyche reporting from the sidelines.
Vikings vs. Bears
This will remain the offical “Monday Night Football” matchup on ESPN. After this matchup, there will only be two more “Monday Night Football” games on ESPN, as all games are scheduled to begin between 1 p.m. and 4:25 p.m. ET in Week 18 on the final Sunday of the season.
Steve Levy will handle play-by-play in the booth, alongside analysts Brian Griese and Louis Riddick, and Lisa Salters will be the sideline reporter for the game.
NFL live stream for ‘Monday Night Football’
Because the “Monday Night Football” game of Vikings-Bears will air on ESPN, it will be available to stream live on all of the team’s digital platforms (ESPN.com, ESPN App, etc.). This will be the easiest way for viewers with cable or satellite to view the game.
Meanwhile, viewers in Canada can watch both games live on DAZN.
Cord-cutters also have plenty of options with which they can stream “Monday Night Football” during the 2021 NFL season.
|Streaming option||Cable subscription needed?||Free?||Cost||Free trial?|
|Yahoo! Sports App||No||Yes||–||–|
|AT&T TV Now||No||No||$55/month||Yes|
|Hulu Plus Live TV||No||No||$55/month||Yes|
‘Monday Night Football’ schedule
There will be 17 “Monday Night Football” games in 2021 even though there is no official doubleheader. That’s because the season has extended to 17 games over 18 weeks. There will be no “Monday Night Football” during Week 18; all games will be played on Sunday.
|Week 1||Sept. 13||Las Vegas Raiders vs. Baltimore Ravens|
|Week 2||Sept. 20||Green Bay Packers vs. Detroit Lions|
|Week 3||Sept. 27||Dallas Cowboys vs. Philadelphia Eagles|
|Week 4||Oct. 4||Los Angeles Chargers vs. Las Vegas Raiders|
|Week 5||Oct. 11||Baltimore Ravens vs. Indianapolis Colts|
|Week 6||Oct. 18||Tennessee Titans vs. Buffalo Bills|
|Week 7||Oct. 25||Seattle Seahawks vs. New Orleans Saints|
|Week 8||Nov. 1||Kansas City Chiefs vs. New York Giants|
|Week 9||Nov. 8||Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Chicago Bears|
|Week 10||Nov. 15||San Francisco 49ers vs. Los Angeles Rams|
|Week 11||Nov. 22||Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. New York Giants|
|Week 12||Nov. 29||Washington Football Team vs. Seattle Seahawks|
|Week 13||Dec. 6||Buffalo Bills vs. New England Patriots|
|Week 14||Dec. 13||Arizona Cardinals vs. Los Angeles Rams|
|Week 15||Dec. 20||Chicago Bears vs. Minnesota Vikings|
|Week 16||Dec. 27||New Orleans Saints vs. Miami Dolphins|
|Week 17||Jan. 3||Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cleveland Browns|