The full NFL schedule will be released on Thursday with a few special games to be announced in the days leading up to it.
We know the 49ers’ opponents for the 2023 season, but we don’t know exactly when they will face each team. One thing we can understand is that San Francisco needs to be featured prominently in the various primetime rankings.
Teams are allowed to play a maximum of five scheduled primetime games. That number could fluctuate throughout the year depending on games that change or come out, but the 49ers should finish with five on their original schedule.
Part of that is because they are one of the favorites to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl. They also have a number of high-profile opponents on their schedule this season.
We’ve taken a look at the games and figured out which ones should be on Thursday, Sunday or Monday Night Football:
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This feels like a break as the two teams rekindle the rivalry that rose to prominence in the early 2010s. San Francisco won all three games last year, including a 41-23 win in the wild card game. It could also be one of the league’s late-year schedules as a non-prime-time game with the potential to be moved to a prime-time slot.
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Speaking of rekindled rivalries, the 49ers knocked the Cowboys out of the postseason two years in a row. The second leg at Levy Stadium feels like an excellent game on Sunday night.
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Why not just finish the 49ers playoff rematch motive here? Of all the postseason rematches, the NFC Championship Game feels like the kind of game that will come on Sunday or Monday night. San Francisco did enough down the stretch to not have a real shot against the Eagles due to Brock Purdy’s injury, it would behoove the NFL to let them try to shore it up in prime time.
(Photo: Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images)
It screams Thursday Night Football, and not just because it features the Jaguars – which is the Thursday Night Football of NFL teams. These are two clubs that went to the playoffs last year, and Trevor Lawrence is a rising superstar at quarterback. Putting him up against a very good 49ers defense should make for a fun midweek game, although the cross-country trip to San Francisco could be brutal. Perhaps putting this one on the back end of a two-game East Coast swing would make sense since the 49ers can stay on that coast between games.
(AP Photo/Aaron Doster)
A possible Super Bowl matchup? Yes please! These two teams have met twice in the Super Bowl, and their last meeting in 2021 in Cincinnati was an overtime thriller. Cincinnati and Philadelphia are the two most obvious choices on this list.
Honorable Mention: Pittsburgh Steelers
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The 49ers and Steelers are two legacy NFL franchises and don’t often face each other. Both teams should be in the playoff race this year, and Mike Tomlin vs. Kyle Shanahan is a really fun coaching matchup that should help drive the storyline.
Honorable Mention: New York Giants
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The Giants-49ers is another matchup that could make sense as a prime-time game for San Francisco’s schedule. We removed them from the list because the NFC East will have a lot of primetime games this year, and three of them against the 49ers feels like a lot. However, the Giants made the postseason a year ago, and pitting Brian Daboll’s offense against Kyle Shanahan’s could be fun to watch.
Story originally appeared on Niners Wire