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Flex THIS, Fox

NBC, taking advantage of the NFL's new "flex" scheduling rules, has swiped a good game from Fox. The Nov. 12 game between undefeated Chicago and the division-leading New York Giants has been moved from Fox to NBC. It's one of six late-season games that NBC gets to choose at the last minute to avoid the problem ABC ran into on Monday nights in recent years: being stuck with dogs with no playoff implications.

Nobody's talking about what ticketholders might think about having their 1 p.m. kickoff changed into a potentially frigid night game. But we're probably not far from the day when network TV has Vitale those annoying and unpredictable human fans kicked out of the stadium anyway and replaced by more pliable digital versions, who could be dressed in tshirts bearing advertising messages and network promos. Not to mention you could theme the virtual fans to holidays. Like, on Halloween, give everybody a Dick Vitale face. Okay, now I'm scaring myself. Let's forget it.

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