Thanks to the NFL's scheduling, the 49ers, who played on Saturday, will have two full days of extra rest than the Cowboys after Monday night's game. This will also be San Francisco's third straight home game and Dallas' third straight road game. And the Cowboys are having to travel from the East Coast to now the West Coast. How big of an advantage is all this for the 49ers?_– Ralph Gruendel/Bloomfield, NJ _
Patrik: Couple of things here to unpack. First, I agree that it's senseless and an obvious competitive disadvantage for any team to play on Monday night and then be asked to face a higher seed on their home field on a short week, but that's the situation the Cowboys are in and nobody's going to make any excuses for them about scheduling if they fail to get the job done. It's not fair, but that's what it is, and they'll need to rise to the occasion. What lessens the blow is that they're not actually flying coast-to-coast, but instead are now back in Dallas and won't leave for San Francisco until Saturday — literally cutting the distance in half. Still, generally speaking, it stinks, but adversity is one thing this team is certainly no stranger to.
Nick*:* Yes, it's definitely an advantage. Is it an excuse? Of course, not. Just go play the game and see what happens. But the NFL needs to change that because in the playoffs, they're trying to make this games as even as possible. They even change overtime rules so BOTH TEAMS can get a possession regardless what happens. Hey, I'm all for home-field advantage, but the two-day difference is a little much. Think about this, the 49ers played Tampa Bay just a few weeks ago so there wasn't much prep needed for them. I would imagine they got a big jump on Dallas as soon as they beat the Seahawks and the Cowboys couldn't get afford to do that at all. Now, I'd be OK with this maybe if the NFL also gave Buffalo (No. 2 in the AFC) the same Saturday game and therefore the league just gave an advantage to the No. 2 seeds like that. If it was planned, I'd be OK with it, maybe. But they didn't do that. Bottom line, drop the Monday night games in the playoffs. Yes, ratings matter but not to the point to give another team a disadvantage.