Adrian Peterson, the NFC's leading rusher, leads the Minnesota Vikings into Chicago for a rivalry game against the defending NFC North champion Bears on Sunday Night Football. Both teams need a win to keep pace with the undefeated Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions.
Calling Vikings-Bears will be six-time Emmy Award-winner Al Michaels (play-by-play), in his 26th season as the voice of the NFL's premier primetime package; 12-time Emmy Award-winner Cris Collinsworth, who won the Emmy for outstanding event analyst in both of his seasons in the Sunday Night Football booth; and sideline reporter Michele Tafoya, in her first season on SNF.
Coverage begins Sunday with Football Night in America at 7 p.m. ET with 22-time Emmy Award-winner Bob Costas hosting the program live from inside the stadium. Costas is joined on site by Michaels and Collinsworth for reaction to the afternoon games.
Dan Patrick co-hosts Football Night from Studio 8G at NBC's 30 Rockefeller Plaza studios and is joined by Super Bowl-winning head coach Tony Dungy, two-time Super Bowl winner Rodney Harrison, Peter King of Sports Illustrated and Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk on NBCSports.com. Alex Flanagan will report from Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass., on the Cowboys-Patriots game.
HOW AL MICHAELS SEES THIS GAME: "You don't have to have a matchup of unbeatens for people to be interested in what's going on. And that is how I approach this game.
"The Bears are one of the iconic NFL franchises and no matter what their record is; like the Steelers or the Packers or the Cowboys, people are interested. Even though they are 2-3 and they dug themselves a tremendous hole in the NFC North, they are still the Chicago Bears and people want to see what's going on.
"The Vikings are in the same boat, even worse than where Chicago is in the standings. But they still have Adrian Peterson, and people love to watch him. Even though Donovan McNabb is not playing well, he's is still a cache guy that people want to find out, 'Hey what's going on with Donovan McNabb?' Jared Allen is always fun to watch. So they've got some stars."
NFL TURNING POINT AIRS TOMORROW ON VERSUS, 10 P.M. ET
NFL Turning Point, VERSUS' new weekly show co-produced by NFL Films and the NBC Sports Group, continues this Thursday at 10 p.m. ET. The hour-long program, hosted by Football Night in America's Dan Patrick, will air throughout the NFL regular season and will focus on the crucial ‘turning point' moment in several games for football fans each week in a more in-depth way than ever before by utilizing NFL Films' unmatched cinematography and sideline and on-field audio.
This week's episode features:
Raiders at Texans - Raiders with an emotional victory the day after the death of Al Davis. Texans QB Matt Schaub and head coach Gary Kubiak were mic'd for sound.
Why the Broncos seem to be a different team with Tim Tebow at quarterback. He replaced Kyle Orton Sunday and nearly led Denver to a comeback win against the Chargers.
Eagles at Bills - The Bills go to 4-1 while the Eagles drop to 1-4.
NBC SPORTSTALK ON VERSUS FOCUSES ON FOOTBALL ON MONDAY AND FRIDAY, 6 p.m. ET
Hosted by Russ Thaler, NBC SportsTalk, the new daily studio show on VERSUS, previews the NFL weekend on Friday at 6 p.m. ET with two of the most knowledgeable and respected NFL insiders, Peter King of Sports Illustrated and Football Night in America and Mike Florio of PreFootballTalk on NBCSports.com and Football Night. Additionally, Gregg Rosenthal of Rotoworld and ProFootballTalk on NBCSports.com will contribute a fantasy segment each Friday.
Monday's NBC SportsTalk program hosted by Thaler and Florio (6 p.m. ET) will recap the week in the NFL.
For more details about NBC SportsTalk visit: http://www.nbcumv.com/mediavillage/sports
SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL EXPANDS DIGITAL COVERAGE
SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL ALL-ACCESS. ALL SEASON LONG: For the second straight season, NBCSports.com is providing a destination for fans dedicated to behind-the-scenes content of Sunday Night Football. SNF All-Access includes exclusive behind-the-scenes photos of the Sunday Night Football production, look-ins on SNF production meetings, Michele Tafoya interviews and conversations with SNF talent.
Visit SNF All-Access at: http://snfallaccess.nbcsports.com/
SNF EXTRA: For the fourth consecutive season, the entire Sunday Night Football schedule is streamed live on NBCSports.com, which comes from NBC Sports' broadcast of Sunday Night Football, plus four additional camera angles and several new interactive features. Sunday Night Football Extra features the broadcast from NBC's Sunday Night Football team: Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth and Michele Tafoya.
Sunday Night Football Extra employs a full HD-quality player, which includes a draggable picture-in-picture feature for any of the online-only cameras, plus full DVR functionality allowing the user to pause and scroll back-and-forth - even review plays in "slo-mo."
New for the 2011 season, Sunday Night Football Extra features online-only sideline updates and tweets from Tafoya, plus behind-the-scenes notes and images thanks to Sunday Night Football All-Access. Users can also share direct links to any play in the game via Twitter and Facebook, and participate in a Twitter Tug of War with fans of the opposing team.