The League

Doug Farrar
Writer

Doug Farrar

A FootballOutsiders.com staff writer

Bad Idea All Around

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Season expansion is probably inevitable, but is it actually a good idea? How do I count the ways in which it isn't?

First of all, good luck convincing every NFL player, and all their agents, that those one or two extra regular-season games aren't a prompt to rip up every current contract and start over. And they'd have a point. If the business you worked for and helped nourish was flush with cash and asked you to work longer hours or more intensely, wouldn't you expect a larger dividend?

Second, there's the injury issue. As it is, football is a war of attrition, and teams get used to managing care through 16 regular-season games and whatever playoffs there may be. Putting every player at risk for injury for that many more plays makes little sense. Which leads to...

...Expanded rosters. Yeah, that'll be great. Throw five or ten marginal players on every roster, basically promoting every practice squad, and all you're doing is watering down the talent pool and creating preseason games under the guise of actual competition. And won't it be nice when the Colts wrap up the AFC South in Week 13 and you don't see Peyton Manning for over a month?

Maybe the expanded season is Roger Goodell's first shot at his dream of an international NFL -- it might make more sense on the surface if there were four or six more teams -- but this is an idea that doesn't even look good in theory, let alone in practice. The expansion from 14 to 16 games in 1978 made sense because there used to be six preseason games. This move? Not so much. Teams need a certain number of preseason games to evaluate their new players and let the vets get the rust off. This smacks of the NFL selling not-ready-for-prime-time games as the real thing, and few people will benefit.

By Doug Farrar  |  March 25, 2009; 12:34 PM ET  | Category:  Doug Farrar , NFL Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
Previous: Don't Dilute the Season | Next: Should the NFL Expand the Regular Season?

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bad idea.

the season is long enough. extending it will not add anything other than $$$.

Posted by: YUTZ | March 26, 2009 2:04 PM

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