NFL schedule complaints? Take a number

The San Francisco 49ers traveled across the country on a short week to face the Baltimore Ravens in a Thanksgiving matchup last season.

The situation was a tough one, the 49ers were not happy about it and the NFL's schedule maker, Howard Katz, heard about it. Did he ever.

"At the league meeting last month, Katz was approached by Baltimore coach John Harbaugh and told he had to meet his brother," Judy Battista writes in the New York Times.

They met, alright. Jim Harbaugh used the occasion to complain about the holiday trip to Baltimore for a game the 49ers lost, 16-6.

"I talked to him, then I talked to him the next day, and then I talked to him the third day," Katz told Battista. "He said, 'Now that I've met you, I don't hate you quite as much.' His brother said to me, 'That’s as good as you’re going to do.' "

Battista's story details the scheduling process from Katz's perspective. We recently discussed one aspect -- short weeks -- for NFC West teams.

The 49ers won't be spending Thanksgiving in Baltimore this season, at least.

Note: Thanks to Kent Somers for pointing out Battista's story, as well as this fantastic one from Paola Boivin on the new life Pat Tillman's widow, Marie, is leading.