Please note that I'm a die-hard Patriots fan, hence I might be a little biased.
I really think he has a point, that the new divisions suck ass. The Patriots had to play the Bills, the Jets, and the Dolphins twice, the worst record of which was 8-8. The two weaker divisions(and the two divisions of which the Wild Card teams came from) both had two teams in the division with losing records. The new divisions kill the parity the NFL has worked for, by giving quite a few teams too many easy games.
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I sense that Kraft is just saying this to excuse the fact that his Superbowl champs didnt make the playoffs. He may be a powerful owner but Taglibue is the most powerful man in sports and I dont see him bending to pressure of a few whiny owners. The NFL system is fine the way it is, and the strength of the divisions will work itself out.
Ya know how we do it, big balling and big blingin'....
The talk is we'll see this playoff system (4 division winners plus two wildcards) for this season and next. If there are no problems with it, it'll stay that way.
Another option I've heard about (no source to link to, but I heard it on ESPN radio around the holidays) was the 4 division winners plus THREE wildcards, with the team with the best record of the division winners getting the only first-round bye. Two plays seven, three plays six, four plays five...lowest remaining seed plays the one seed.
"No team that has lost in the first round of the playoffs has ever gone on to win the Super Bowl." - Dave Letterman, January 6, 2003.
No, no, no!!!!!!!! Please leave it with just six team from each conference. That's the best part about the NFL. The playoffs are not watered down like the NBA and NHL. I have no problem going back to 3 divisions and 3 wildcards, but please don't add teams to the playoffs. 8-8 teams don't deserve to be in, and 9-7 teams should feel fortunate if they do indeed get in.
I like the current divisional format. It has put even more focus into the interdivisional games. If you can go 6-0 in your division you are almost a lock to win your division and in the drivers seat for a first round bye. Go .500 the rest of the way and you end up at 11-5. The second place team would have to go 8-2 with the rest of their games in order to finish 12-4 (assuming they go 4-2 in the division because they lose the tiebreaker.)
As for the playoffs, I don't see what the problem is. The top 2 teams deserve a week off for playing consistantly well for 16 weeks. Add more teams and you dillute the playoffs like the NHL and the NBA.
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Considering that Kraft is one of the most powerful owners in the NFL right now, I think that this has a good shot of happening
For some reason I don't remember Bob Kraft bitching about the bye week last season when it benefitted his team. If you put 16 teams in the playoffs overall, your going to have at least 1 sub .500 team a year in. And, if your not going to get a bye week if your the 1 or 2 seed, why even try the last week of the season, you can rest your regulars then, and that could knock out/bring in teams from the edge into the playoffs. The current system is working fine, no reason at all to screw it up.
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My God, he wants half of all teams to make the playoffs. That's WAY TOO MANY.
I remember, I saw a site once that listed what the person believed was the correct % of teams that should make playoffs in any sport. I forget what that site was though. It was some Anti-BCS College Football Playoff Site with some long .com name. Oh well.
EDIT: I found it. It was http://www.collegeplayoffs.com/ . The people there recommend that 37% of all teams in a league make the playoffs, although they don't really explain why, unless I'm missing it. .37*32=11.84, or approximately the 12 teams we have now.
I say keep it at 6 per conference. 8 is too many, and 7 is just weird.
The "we play in a tough division" argument doesn't hold any water. Teams change drastically from year to year. On paper, the NFC South was the weakest division before the season, and they ended up with two playoffs teams, one near-miss and a 7-9 club.
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