Thursday, December 13, 2012

The good and the bad of expanding the NFL playoffs

I do not like the NFL brand of football. I love it. From a purely selfish standpoint, I would welcome an expanded NFL playoff format. More of the intensity of playoff football, the better. But I am not sure it would be the right thing. This is why:
7-9 teams in postseason like '10 Seahawks not a good thing
- Expanding the playoffs would water down the value of reaching the playoffs. Currently in the NFL, it can't really be that bad a season for those teams getting into the playoff field. Less than half the league gets in. If more teams are added, you'd see more .500 or sub .500 teams get in.
- Right now, being a division champ means a lot, often a first-round bye. I think that's a good thing.
- Players are already stretched to the max when it comes injuries. Adding two games to the regular season, which was quickly shot down by the players (correctly) in the last collective bargaining negotiations, would have been a disaster. The NFL, like virtually any successful business, has the idea that if you are not expanding your business, you are not growing. But player safety must be paramount in comparison to that ideal. It is only a couple more games, but the domino effect of more teams playing for higher stakes late in the season, in addition to the added playoff games, would put far more players at risk of injury.


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