Raiders-Chargers: Must-miss TV

The NFL Network's live package pops out another pooch of a game, so again you don't have to worry about not getting it.

Published December 4, 2008 8:20PM (EST)

Have we entered upside-down world? The NFL is the league that knows how to get things done, while Major League Baseball is the tin-eared pack of dopes who in living memory wiped out a season by stupidly daring the strongest and richest union in the country to strike and more recently has had brilliant ideas such as Spider-Man on the bases.

But here we are less than a month away from the launch of the MLB Network, a channel that will be available in about a kadrillion homes -- never mind cable, you'll be able to get it on certain models of staplers -- and that has hardcore baseball fans, who have spent most of their lives thinking MLB couldn't do much of anything right outside the foul lines, salivating.

The NFL Network? It's in protracted micturition warfare with various cable and satellite companies over carrying the channel. Seriously, this has been going on for years, while the customers are saying, "Can you just work this crap out, please?" It's a lot like the old baseball strike: kabillionaires and katrillionaires arguing over millions. Just work it the freak out.

But wait. What happens if the NFL and its foes, most notably Comcast, work it out? Hundreds of thousands of football fans will get to ignore games like Thursday's Raiders-Chargers tilt in San Diego.

This is the fifth in the NFL Network's package of eight night games, and already four of the league's biggest pooches -- these two, plus the Ohio delegation -- have been featured. Of the four teams that would have home-field advantage if the playoffs started now, only one, the Steelers, will have made an appearance on the NFL Network by the end of the season. Somehow, the Giants didn't make the cut, though somebody, somewhere, thought this baby was going to be worthy of prime time:

Oakland (3-9) at SAN DIEGO (4-8)
It's not even worthy of looking for the remote.
Kids: San Diego (10-point favorite)

By King Kaufman

King Kaufman is a senior writer for Salon. You can e-mail him at king at salon dot com. Facebook / Twitter / Tumblr

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