Best NFL weekend of the year

If you watch ESPN at all, you know Chris Berman’s going to be excited this weekend.
It’s time for the final eight NFL teams to meet. Four teams with first round byes hosting the four teams that won last weekend.
The weekend starts off Saturday at 4:30 p.m., as the Saints visit San Francisco on FOX. Both teams finished 13-3, and Drew Brees’ record-passing season will go against a tough 49er defense.
In primetime, the Patriots host Tim Tebow and the Broncos on CBS. New England seemed to end “Tebow magic” in week 15, but Tebow rallied Denver to an overtime victory last Sunday.
Sunday, the second-seeded Ravens host Houston at 1 p.m. on CBS. Baltimore has won four road playoff games the last three years, but hasn’t won a home playoff game since the run to the Super Bowl XXXV championship in 2001.
The Packers continue their defense of the Super Bowl XLV title when the Giants come calling at 4:30 p.m. on FOX. The Giants’ trek to winning Super Bowl XLII included a win at Green Bay in this round.
NBC starts its NHL game of the week package Saturday, with Chicago taking on Detroit at 12:30 p.m.
Thursday, Comcast shows the Flyers at Islanders at 7 p.m. Friday, the Capitals visit Tampa Bay on Comcast-plus at 7 p.m. and Sunday Carolina visits Washington at 5 p.m.
The Rangers visit Montreal Sunday at 7 p.m. on NBC Sports Network.
CBS has college basketball Saturday at 3:30 p.m., with Oregon going to Arizona. Sunday after the Ravens’ game, Indiana visits Ohio State.
Virginia takes its top 20 ranking to Cameron Indoor Stadium Thursday at 9 p.m., facing the sixth-ranked Blue Devils on ESPN. The opener has Wisconsin heading to Purdue.
ESPN2’s night begins at 7 p.m. with Clemson taking on Boston College. Mississippi State hosts Tennesee at 9 p.m., followed by Saint Mary’s vs. Gonzaga.
The ACC network has two games set for the weekend – N.C. State vs. Wake Forest Saturday at 1 p.m. and Georgia Tech vs. Maryland Sunday at 4 p.m.
ESPN has a Saturday afternoon doubleheader, starting at noon with Kentucky-Tennessee before the ACC contest between North Carolina and Florida State. ESPN2 shows three games Saturday as Notre Dame and Connecticut play at 11 a.m. Then it’s off to the Big 12 for Missouri-Texas and Baylor vs. Oklahoma State at 3 p.m.
Comcast has west coast basketball Thursday, with Oregon at Arizona State at 10:30 p.m. Saturday starts with CAA action between Hofstra and Old Dominion, then Virginia Tech heads to Boston College at 3 p.m. Sunday, UCLA meets USC at 9 p.m.
MASN offers a pair of games Thursday, starting at 7 p.m. in the Big South as Radford plays Liberty. Idaho takes on Louisiana Tech from the WAC at 9 p.m. There’s four Big East games on Saturday, beginning at noon with Villanova playing Cincinnati. Rutgers takes on West Virginia at 2 p.m., followed by DePaul-Louisville and Pittsburgh against Providence. Radford meets VMI at 8 p.m.
Georgetown plays St. John’s at noon Sunday.
UNLV plays San Diego State Saturday at 4 p.m. on NBC Sports network.
ESPN2 has women’s basketball Sunday afternoon. Temple plays Dayton at 2 p.m., followed by Ohio State against Michigan State. Comcast has ACC women’s basketball Sunday at 1 p.m. – Georgia Tech at Boston College.
TNT has its Thursday doubleheader, starting the Knicks at Memphis at 8 p.m. Orlando travels to Golden State for the nightcap. ESPN starts Friday with the Bulls taking on the Celtics, then the Heat battle the Nuggets. Sunday at 9 p.m., the Suns play the Spurs.
The Wizards travel to Philadelphia Friday at 7 p.m. on Comcast, and the teams meet in Washington Saturday at 7 p.m.
NBC Sports Network has college ice hockey Friday at 7:30 p.m., matching Minnesota-Duluth and Nebraska-Omaha.
The Australian Open starts its two-week run Sunday at 6:30 p.m. on ESPN2.
ESPN offers high school basketball Sunday at 4 p.m., with Tilton playing Brewster in New Hampshire.
The PBA World Championship final will be Sunday at 1 p.m. on ESPN.

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