NFL to play three games on Christmas Day for the first time

Christmas falls on a Sunday this year, and the NFL is taking advantage.

The league will play three games on Dec. 25, two afternoon games, and a prime-time matchup, according to the Associated Press.

“Christmas, when it falls on an NFL game day, we’ve had a lot of success there, all due respect to our friends at the NBA. It is something that our friends are interested in,” NFL vice president of broadcasting Mike North said on Buffalo Bills sideline reporter Sal Capaccio’s podcast.

“If Christmas falls on a Sunday, it makes perfect sense,” he said.

It’s the third straight year with Christmas Day football. The holiday usually belongs to the NBA — the league has had five or more games on Christmas for the past 14 years.

The NFL won the battle for television ratings last year, as the Packers’ win over the Browns averaged a 10.8 rating, while the NBA’s top game, Nets-Lakers, averaged a 2.4, according to Sports Media Watch.

Browns-Packers was the second most-watched game of the NFL season, trailing only the Thanksgiving Day matchup between the Cowboys and Raiders, Sports Media Watch reported.

The NFL’s 2022 regular season schedule will be released on May 12, the league announced Thursday.

– This story includes wire reporting

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