Lions, Bears & Colts on FOX 17 today – your NFL viewing guide

The NFL season is here, FOX 17 is back on Dish Network and all is right with the world again!

Weekly, I’ll be putting together a schedule and explainer of what games are being televised in the West Michigan market.  There are some general rules that the networks and NFL abide by which sometimes help to explain things.  But, there are always exceptions, especially later in the season.  Here they are:

  1. The Detroit Lions are our home market team.  They will be on in West Michigan every week.
  2. Fox gets the games where the NFC team is the visiting team.  CBS gets the games where the AFC team is the visiting team.
  3. After the Lions, our market will first get to see teams in the Lions’ division: Chicago Bears, Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings.  Usually in that order. This is based on geography, not on the skill level of the teams or the fanaticism of the related fans.
  4. Each week, either Fox or CBS has the doubleheader and will air games at both 1:00pm and 4:30pm.  The other will then just air one game.

That all being said, here we go into Week #1 of the NFL!

Fox has the doubleheader, so at 1:00pm, FOX 17 will be airing the Chicago Bears at Houston Texans and then the Detroit Lions at Indianapolis Colts at 4:25pm.  Fox will likely go to the Lions game even if the Bears game is not done.

As luck would have it, the Green Bay Packers (at Jacksonville) and Minnesota Vikings (at Tennessee) are both on Fox and both play at 1:00pm.  West Michigan and east Michigan have the Bears game, but if you want to see the Packers, you can head to the Lansing area or up north to Traverse City or the Upper Peninsula.  Vikings fans…head back to Minnesota (or Tennessee).

Map from

Map from

On CBS, our area will get the Cincinnati Bengals vs. the New York Jets, announced by the lead team of Jim Nantz and Phil Simms.

The Detroit Lions game will have play-by-play and commentary from Kenny Albert and Daryl Johnson.  The lead Fox team of Joe Buck and Troy Aikman will be calling the New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys game, which most of the country will see while we are watching the Lions.

Sunday night’s game on NBC is New England at Arizona.  Monday night, ESPN has two games: Pittsburgh at Washington and the new Los Angeles Rams at San Francisco.

Later in the season, the NFL and the networks can ‘flex’ which games get shown on prime time, so that can change up the Sunday schedules.  We’ll keep you posted.

For all the week one TV distribution maps, visit .

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