Why are the Steelers playing on Saturday this week?

A Saturday NFL game in Week 15? What gives?

Steelers, Pittsburgh Steelers
Steelers, Pittsburgh Steelers / Jenna Watson/IndyStar / USA TODAY

If you were hoping to sit back and watch the Pittsburgh Steelers in the early afternoon slate on Sunday, it's possible that you may have to wait until next year. After playing in primetime on Thursday Night Football against the New England Patriots, the Steelers are on the road in Indianapolis this Week. But it won't be for a Sunday showing. This game is taking place on Saturday.

The Steelers vs. Colts game is scheduled to kick off at 4:30 p.m. Eastern Time on Saturday, December 16th. This is the middle game of three contests that will be played on Saturday this week. But what's with all of the Saturday contests in Week 15?

Why is the Steelers vs. Colts game on Saturday?

As part of a new NFL flex scheduling rules, a date and time were not set for this contest when the NFL schedule was released. Instead, the National Football League had the flexibility to wait and see which matchup would be most desirable for the Saturday afternoon game.

They landed on the Steelers vs. Colts game, as both teams are 7-6. The winner could rise in the AFC playoff picture with the loser falling out of one of the seven playoff spots for the time being.

The pickings were pretty slim for this contest. The other three options the league could have chosen from in Week 15 were the Falcons at Panthers, the Bears at Browns, or the Chiefs at Patriots. Kansas City often steals the spotlight, but the NFL apparently didn't think that many football fans would want to spend a Saturday afternoon watching Patrick Mahomes against a 3-10 Patriots team.

When will the Steelers play on Sunday again?

Believe it or not, we are going to go nearly a full month between Sunday games for the Steelers. Their last game on Sunday came against the Arizona Cardinals at home on December 3rd in Week 13. Next week, the Steelers also play on Saturday afternoon at 4:30 p.m. Eastern Time.

This means that the Steelers won't play on Sunday again until Week 17 on December 31st when they travel to the West Coast to face the Seattle Seahawks.

What other NFL games are on Saturday this week?

There are three Saturday games set to be played in the NFL in Week 15. The Bengals will host the Vikings at 1:00 p.m. ET, followed by the Steelers vs. Colts at 4:30 p.m. ET. The Broncos will travel to Detroit to face the Lions for the night game on Saturday, which is set to kick off at 8:15 p.m. Eastern Time.

The Pittsburgh Steelers have one more game on the schedule that doesn't have a date or time announced -- their game vs. the Baltimore Ravens in Week 18. How the Steelers perform down the stretch could determine what day and time this game is played in the final week of the 2023 season.