Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Bruschi on expanding playoffs: Add two, or add none


The conversation on the NFL's potential expansion of the playoffs has picked up this year, and its increased likeliness has prompted former New England Patriots star linebacker Tedy Bruschi to write an open letter to commissioner Roger Goodell.

Bruschi said he likes the concept of expanding the playoffs but doesn't like the idea of adding just one team, as it would give a bye to only the top seed in each conference.

"If the NFL is serious about expanding, I think it would be better to add two more teams in each conference," Bruschi wrote. "Then you have everyone play on the opening weekend, similar to what we see in the NBA and NHL.

So if you're going to expand the playoff field, the NFL should really say bye to the bye, which is one of the greatest advantages in professional sports."

Bruschi makes a fair point, but if the league added two teams, that means half of the teams in the NFL would get into the postseason. Even with a 16-game schedule, and especially if the league added one or two more regular season games, those contests would be rendered less meaningful, as would the playoffs.

Let's just leave it be.

(Here's Bruschi's full letter. It's a quick read. A "memo," really.)

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