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Totally Not Fake News: The Greatest Non-Great Matchup of the Week of the Season

Can something be both unwatchable and must-see-TV?

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Houston Texans vs Jacksonville Jaguars
Round 2
Set Number: X163792 TK1

Jacksonville, FL – The process of the NFL putting together a full 17-game season is a complex enterprise, requiring extensive and complex coordination between cities/organizations/venues. The league looks to balance the scheduling requirements of teams under a series of parameters. The hope is that every single game provides a great opportunity for a thrilling/engaging matchup that will bring eyes to the viewing screens, ears to the commentary and money into the coffers of the teams/advertisers.

Then you have games like the one slated for this week between the Houston Texans and the Jacksonville Jaguars. While these divisional rivals that have a history of playing some close games, this iteration hardly ranks as the marquee matchup of the week. The teams are combined 4-22, competing for which squad can lead in being the worst in respective offensive/defensive/special teams statistical rankings. Both made questionable coaching hires coming into the season, with said hirings proving about as effective as predicted (although Jacksonville now has a job opening). If anyone is even paying attention to these squads, it is more for individuals that have not set foot inside the painted lines of the playing fields in game jerseys.

To say there is a noted lack of excitement surrounding this game is an understatement. There are reports that teachers, law enforcement and parents in Northeastern Florida are using the threat of forced attendance and/or watching of this game as a potential punishment option for those misbehaving.

“[Easterby] the whole ‘Elf on the Shelf’ thing, when I told my kids that if they don’t stop misbehaving around the house, their daddy was going to drag them to the game. They started crying and begging me ‘Please, no Mommy!!! Tell Santa not to bring us any presents instead!!! We promise to behave! We promise not to dance like Urban Meyer at recess again!!! Please!!!’ Best week of peace I’ve ever gotten around the house with my 6 kids” proclaimed Mrs. Cleo Charlene Gunbody, 25, of Amelia Island, FL. “[Easterby], even the little baby stopped crying when he heard the threat of the game.”

“Been getting’ such good result in discipline and confessions, we are thinking of letting them folks down at GITMO know that they can use this option. They’ll be confessing to the Kennedy assassination right along side spilling the beans on the next big terrorist plot.” Noted Nassau County Deputy Brandon “Doofy” Fife.

While such testimonials offer a degree of back-handed praise for this match-up, this is not exactly welcome news for the brain-trust at NFL HQ. “Look, we know that fans in Jacksonville love to dress up like teal seats. Team pride and all. We are also aware that the Texans fans love their Red Seat; Invisible Man/Woman/Non-Binary Humanoid; Romulan Cloaking Device Game-Day Uniforms. However, we need to have some sort of quasi-palatable TV product. From what we are hearing about this coming matchup in Florida, we could be heading for the worst rated TV product in the league. Can’t have that” stated a harried league office who threw his briefcase in front of his face to avoid putting a face on camera.

Sometimes, fans of not-so-great-teams think alike

Desperate to head off a brutal TV show this coming Sunday, the NFL pursued a very out-of-the-book option. If you recall, back during the 2020 playoffs, the Bears-Saints playoff game found a broadcast home on Nickelodeon. While viewers saw the traditional trapping of the NFL experience with touchdowns/flags/timeouts/etc, the network also incorporated various Nickelodeon-type features like CGI-Slime Cannons in the Endzone and other various TV special effects that actually received very positive feedback. With that in mind, the NFL made a rather unexpected outreach to another long-time cable network.

In a statement released via the NFL Twitter site: “We at the NFL are excited to announce on very, very short-notice, our new one-game partnership with the Sci-Fi Channel. We at the NFL are always excited to expand the viewing parameters for the fan. We look forward to working with them, seeing what they can do to help out by broadcasting this week’s Texans/Jaguars matchup.”

“Well, I must admit that we at SYFY never, ever expected to get that call” exclaimed an unnamed executive at the network. “I mean, we haven’t received this much attention in a long time. We were busy working on a Mega-Giant-Squid Megalodon vs. Three-Headed-Zombie-Hippo-Shark series of movies. Figured on having that completed and shot in about another week, just in time for New Years Day. However, when someone like the NFL comes calling, you are clearly going to pick up the phone.”

“When the NFL pitched their proposal, we were clearly ecstatic, but we did have to wonder what was the vision for this game, and why this game? They quickly cleared the air, asking us to think of this game as the ‘Sharknado’ of NFL matchups. They were ‘we know this is as bad a matchup as we can ever had, but if we can give it the Sharknado treatment, helping this bad matchup look so bad and goofy that you can’t turn away, giving it that must-see treatment that made the Sharknado series so great for us.”

A proposed promotional poster for the upcoming game...all from the creative geniuses at SYFY

“The league gave us carte blanche to use our various CGI-mechanisms in order to create as exciting and thrilling a matchup as possible. Our special effects teams took that challenge to heart. I mean, they are all LA-based fans, but still, they all figured it might actually make the Jags and Texans kinda watchable. We have ideas about how to deal with the cheerleaders, the sidelines…we actually have ideas for sacks and fumbles. It will be so, so glorious, just like the series of animal movies you have come to know and love from the SYFY.”

Whether this action translates into improved ratings or not remains to be seen. TNFN can confirm that SYFY is looking at pre-production for a series of football related movies, such as “Turf Sharks”, “Super Bowl Shark Massacre” and all broadcast rights to every future Jags/Texans game. Come what may on the field, the potential for the Sci-Fi Channel to broadcast games opens the door to other options. Aren’t you looking forward to the Hallmark Channel broadcasting an annual Christmas romance/Chicago vs. Detroit matchup movie? Won’t it be so heartwarming…love and a lot of sacks.

Until next time.

At Totally Not Fake News, We Will Always Relay All the News That is Fit to Print, and Even If It Is Not Fit to Print, We Will Print It Anyway.