Is there a ‘Thursday Night Football’ game tonight? NFL schedule, TV channels for Week 18

By | January 4, 2023

The 2022 NFL season is coming to a close, and as the calendar turns to 2023, football fans are going to have to be weaned off the sport a bit.

The NFL will soon go from having 16 matchups per week to a maximum of six. Those contests will be spread out over a few days, but it still won’t be anything like the marathon that is the regular season.

And with college football bowl games coming to an end, that will mean football fans will no longer be able to catch a game every day of the week. They won’t even be able to watch a game on Thursday for the first time since the summer.

Yes, “Thursday Night Football” is over for the 2022 NFL season. NFL fans will have to wait for Saturday’s Chiefs-Raiders game at 4:30 p.m. ET to get their fix while those looking to enjoy any type of football game will be sorely disappointed. 

Here’s everything you need to know about “TNF” in Week 18 and what you can watch with the program finished for the season.

MORE: Watch NFL Week 18 games live with fuboTV (free trial)

Is there a ‘Thursday Night Football’ game tonight?

There is NO “Thursday Night Football” game on Thursday, Jan. 5. The final Thursday night game of the year was played in Week 17 on Dec. 29, with the Cowboys beating the Titans 27-13. Tennessee rested many of its key players in that one, including Derrick Henry, to prepare for a pivotal Week 18 matchup with the Jaguars.

The NFL never hosts a “Thursday Night Football” in the final week of the season. Why? Because it doesn’t want to force teams jockeying for playoff positioning to have to play a condensed week. Plus, teams with nothing to play for would have extra incentive to rest starters which would make for a subpar product.

That said, the NFL will host a couple of games on Saturday in Week 18. That will help make up for the league’s lack of stand-alone games on Thursday and Monday. It will also prevent the playoff teams in action Saturday from getting too much of a rest advantage over their potential opponents.

The NFL broadcast Thursday night games from Weeks 1 to 17 in 2022 after doing so from Weeks 1 to 16 the previous season. It remains to be seen whether the 17 Thursday night games will remain for the 2023 season or if the league’s amount of “TNF” games will depend on the league’s holiday calendar for Christmas and New Years.

NFL schedule Week 18

Below is a look at the NFL’s Week 18 schedule, which features two games on Saturday and 14 on Sunday.

Saturday, Jan. 7

Game Time (ET) TV
Chiefs vs. Raiders 4:30 p.m. ESPN/ABC
Titans vs. Jaguars 8:15 p.m. ESPN/ABC

Sunday, Jan. 8

Game Time (ET) TV
Buccaneers vs. Falcons 1 p.m. Fox
Texans vs. Colts 1 p.m. CBS
Patriots vs. Bills 1 p.m.  CBS
Jets vs. Dolphins 1 p.m. Fox
Vikings vs. Bears 1 p.m. Fox
Panthers vs. Saints 1 p.m. Fox
Browns vs. Steelers 1 p.m. CBS
Ravens vs. Bengals 1 p.m. CBS
Giants vs. Eagles 4:25 p.m. CBS
Chargers vs. Broncos 4:25 p.m. CBS
Cowboys vs. Commanders 4:25 p.m. Fox
Rams vs. Seahawks 4:25 p.m. Fox
Cardinals vs. 49ers 4:25 p.m. Fox
Lions vs. Packers 8:20 p.m. NBC

WEEK 18 PICKS: Against the spread | Straight up

Sports on TV today

Jan. 5 will mark the first Sunday without any sort of competitive football since July 28, which is before the NFL preseason began with the Hall of Fame game. So, for the first time in six months, NFL fans will have to choose a different sport to watch.

The good news is that TNT will start cranking up its featured Thursday night NBA games with the NFL out of the picture. This week, Jayson Tatum’s Celtics will play Luka Doncic’s Mavericks in a game featuring talented young superstars. That, plus two-time MVP Nikola Jokic’s battle against Kawhi Leonard’s Clippers, will be the marquee action for sports fans on Thursday.

Here’s a look at what you can watch during the time slot normally occupied by “Thursday Night Football.”

  • NBA: Mavericks vs. Celtics (7:30 p.m. ET, TNT) and Nuggets vs. Clippers (10 p.m. ET, TNT)
  • NHL: Blue Jackets vs. Capitals (7 p.m. ET, ESPN)
  • NCAAM: Houston vs. SMU (7 p.m. ET, ESPN2) and UCLA vs. USC (9:30 p.m. ET, ESPN)