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How to make a 20 game season work

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by patfanken, Jun 6, 2009.

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  1. patfanken

    patfanken Rookie

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    Though I agree that the 4 preseason games are worthless, I would also agree with Mike Reiss that the increased injury factor that a 20 game season (plus playoffs) would make a 20 game seaon unworkable, especially when you concider the amount of money that is tied up in those 53 man rosters. But here is how it COULD work with the following provisions.

    1. No player could play more than 16 regular season games (if you wanted to make that 17 I wouldn't gripe)

    2. Practise squads would increase from 8 to 10 (and if you wanted to make that 12, I wouldn't gripe) Practise squad guys would now earn 4 game checks (at the minimum I presume),

    The bad new is that you'd have 4 games a season where your starting QB wouldn't play (though in Minnesota, they wouldn't notice ;) )

    On the other hand, it would be both interesting and challenging for both the fans and coaches to mix and match players and games that are missed.

    I would extend the season 2 weeks. and perhaps add another mini camp during the off season. (start one week earlier, end one week later.)

    I would replace the preseason games with 2 or 3 controlled scrimmages with other teams training nearby. That would give the coaches a chance to see bubble players in action against other competition, but limit injury factors.

    For example teams could play 7 on 9 for running game drill with the DL and LBs vs the OL/TE and RBs . 7-7 passing drills with the LB - DBs vrs WRs - You could end the scrimage with 20 play 11-11 full scrimage controlled with quick whistles by the coaches.

    All not as good as a real preseason game for the coaches (especially in the kicking game), but not bad either. In reality in these days the coaches already know who their top 45 players are by the end of mini camp. The rest of preseason is only to get those 45 players prepared for the regular season and find those last 8 guys, plus the practise squad.

    As usual, your comments and refinements are welcome (as if I could stop them ;) )
  2. MoLewisrocks

    MoLewisrocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Somebody already suggested something almost as bad as this and it doesn't fly. You're suggestion is even worse considering you want to give them 4 more regular season games and no pre season when even Goodell hasn't been foolish enough to ask for that. You're playing 4 games with backups so essentially moving the pre season that season ticket holders already don't want to pay for and some apparently don't even want to watch into the regular season. And the pre season isn't just about getting the 45 ready. It's about identifying the best of them for the end of the active roster and another 8 who need to be developed and evaluated at game speed so they can realistically be expected to be remotely capable of filling in in a worst case scenario. Doing that in shorts and shells practices and scripted scrimmages and making the assumption it works in full pads with contact at game speed in season is a prescription for disaster. That alone would raise the level of injuries exponentially, not just to those players but the poor bastards who were now forced to line up along side them...

    And some of the 45 will always need the pre season for one reason or another. Just ask Brady because he's set to lobby hard for playing time this pre season to knock the rust off without costing his team games... For the 45 the preseason is about developing or regaining your timing incrementally under game conditions. Asking guys to do that when it counts is nonsensical.

    And I won't even bother going into how it's mathmatically impossible to have more mini camps plus scrimmages and add 4 regular season games while merely starting one week earlier and ending one week later...
  3. Pats726

    Pats726 Rookie

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    Firstly...4 preseason games are NOT worthless...if you wish to debate that, that is a whole other issue. CoachB has said that it only takes 2 games for the vets to get ready for the season...BUT on the other hand, for younger players to learn about the game and develop, 6 is better suited...so he said the 4 was a good compromise. He said that on "the Big Show" early last year.
    Once you start TO LIMIT how many games players can play that changes the whole idea of what sport is about. If you can name a sport THAT LIMITS in any way player availability do tell us all. There are limiting factors like injuries and such..BUT not built into the rules of the game. That is foreign to what sport is all about. So right there, I really have a hard time accepting that concept. It's NOT part of what I want to see...being FORCED to use lesser talent. I am not sure WHAT that is testing for a team...depth?? Practically, there are many problems with that, from having to have extra special team players (kickers, punters, long snappers) to what gamblers would be doing, wanting to get the inside track on who would be NOT playing what games, to what fans would think when teams would not have their best players on the field. That to me is a non starter right there. Maybe workable in theory, but you are making a fundamental change in the game. Adding a strategy that should NOT be part of the equation.
    It might be interesting to see how they would mix match players..but who really CARES about that?? I certainly would not..and i would not care about seeing teams playing with handicaps already in place.
    How large a roster would you want?? Having to have players sit, a squad would have to be considerably larger. Controlled scrimmages instead of real games?? That really gives younger developing players nada.
    Really not at all workable..fundamental changes to the fabric of the sport..a loser...BUT it's always good to see where out of the box thinking can go.
  4. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    This proposal would only serve to water down the talent pool, which is already an issue..

    What games are less important than others??

    Take this for example certain parts of the game have to do with playing together, barring injury you could conceivable have in a 4 person d backfield only 4 games where your best 4 would play together.. for your o line they would never play as a unit until the post season..

    I think it would throw the whole game completely out of sync....
  5. patfanken

    patfanken Rookie

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    The fact is Mo, that the league WILL be adding games in the near future, THAT is inevidible. Now whether thats 1 game 2 games or 4 games is to be determined. Probably 2, but for my example I took the extreme number that's been floated.

    Now as to your suggestion that there would be no preseason, only proves that you really didn't read the post. In my scenerio Pre-season would STILL be 4-6 weeks long depending on how many games are added. Instead of preseason games, controlled scrimmages would be used to evaluate talent and get players ready for live action.



    You are making a lot of ASSUMPTIONS here, Mo....and you know what happens when you assume too much. First of all, you ASSUME that the entire preseason is done in shorts and shells. I would bet that nearly a third of the Pats preseason practises are conducted in FULL pads and at FULL speed. Times where you can fully evaluate talent, both for the end of the roster and practise squads.

    The fact is that the real value of current preseason games is more for the coaches practising substitutions and perfecting their game time communication protocols, than evaluating talent. Again they get enough full speed looks during camp to do that.

    .

    Well here you make a good point. IIRC, I was thinking of a 2 game addition when I wrote that line....and didn't check by copy for that kind of inconsistency....probably because I believe that 2 will be the number the union and management agree to.
  6. Urgent

    Urgent Rookie

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    Double-headers!
  7. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I think this (no more than 16 games/player) would cause way more problems than it would solve (increased revenue.)

    For starters special teamers would also have to sit for four games; that would force starters to play that much more on S/T. The net result would be no less injuries for the starters due to the increased number of plays on special teams.

    Another example: what if given last year's schedule (in a future 20-game season) Bill Belichick decided to give as many starters as possible the game off for the game at San Diego - deciding that being the second of back-to-back west coast games, against a quality team, it made more sense to throw in the towel and save those starters for another game. However, he then played all his starters at home against the Broncos. Then the season unfolds and Denver and San Diego tie for the AFC West - but San Diego wins on the tiebreaker thanks to a better AFC record - the result of the two games the Pats played against the Chargers and Broncos.

    Take it a step further and consider the possibility of fans calling for their team to tank (i.e., hold their starters out) to keep a rival out of the playoffs; does the team do that, to please their fanbase?

    Then there's the situation with draft picks that a team has traded for. The Pats have the 49ers pick; they're unlikely to rest starters in a game against them. A game against another NFC West team might be a different story.

    All these scenarios (and more) are going to have fans and media screaming "foul"; but on the other hand there may be times that it is in the team's best interest to play the season in this manner. If you think people questioned the integrity of the game after spygate, can you imagine what it would be like with coaches being forced to sit players four games per year?
  8. Pats726

    Pats726 Rookie

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    There are many many more problems that this creates than solves..For me the big one is that it goes against the very nature of what sport is about...putting the best team out against an opponent. By design, rules limiting players are taking that away. There is NO SPORT where basic rules of a game limit player's participation. The havoc this could have would make the late in the season shenanigans look like child's play and all would be screaming foul at many points in a year. And what about gambling?? Inside word on when the best players would be out would shift odds and create a lot of scenarios that I am sure the OP has not even looked at.
    It's really not good for anyone involved.
  9. JR4

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    Just because one does NOT do it, is not a reason to cast the idea aside.

    One game is not the season and the idea is to be a winner when the
    season ends. This idea introduce a new facet of the strategy game.
    All coaches use strategy to some extent. A new play designed for a
    particular opponent weakness ... etc. With this idea coaches now have
    determine when not to use their starting QB. What's the best team to
    run on? I'll use my backup QB then ... etc.
    Teams are still using their best players ... but in the best way.

    By the way Baseball doesn't use it's best pitcher all the time so this is
    not the first time a long season required resting a player. In baseball it is
    not a requirement but it is a self imposed limiting condition.
    The only difference here is that it is required.

    As for odds makers. Call the players sitting out because of the 16 game
    rule the "Resting Players".
    A requirement that the team post the "Resting Players" list for the next game the day after a game is played gives odds makers all the info they
    need.

    One can always find an excuse for not doing any thing when there are often good reasons to a thing if a little compromise is used.
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2009
  10. spacecrime

    spacecrime Rookie

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    Thanks. I think.
  11. spacecrime

    spacecrime Rookie

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    People seem opposed to this for some reason. Players play 16 games now over 17 weeks. Playing 16 games over 19 or 20 weeks would be better as they could get rest mid-season.

    Most of the objections seem to be of the don't-play-18-games-variety. I know you are saying, "If the league goes to more games, here is a way to make it happen," but people cannot get past the fact they they don't want more games, and cannot address your question (which is not should we or shouldn't we, but how could we if mandated to).

    How can you say this? We are talking about possibilities. There are no rules yet. We are formulating them. Open your horizons and think freely. There is no reason why teams could designate 6-7 players as ST only. Punter, kicker, long snapper, gunner, whatever - players who ONLY play STs. They could play all games.

    Yeah, and it could easily go the other way. It could work in a team's favor. Fact is, BB could do that now it he wanted. All a team -every team - needs to do is rest two players a game. Teams play many many game with two starters out. That's why there are 53 men on the team, not 22. If a team cannot win with a couple of starters out, the playoffs won't matter because they aren't going anywhere.

    You can't be serious. A head coach do something for the purpose of pleasing a fan base? Since when do head coaches poll fans to see what they should do, who they should draft, who they should cut?

    Sit two players. Do the math. 22 players get to sit out 2 games each. 44 player-days over 20 weeks. Besides, you are still missing the point. Players get hurt. many starters miss games every week. Most coaches will be smart enough to rest players after they pull a hammy or tear a muscle. They aren't going to play for three-four weeks anyway. Take the two weeks off then.

    It just boggles my mind how people immediately and vehemently jump on the change-is-bad bandwagon without at least thinking it through.

    Yes, there are disadvantages. You have to rest you QB and you have to decide when, and you will be second guessed as to which players you rest when. You could rest a WR and on the first play from scrimmage you lose two WR to injury.

    But there are advantages, too.

    what people are doing is coming up with reasons why NOT to go to more games. Okay, you don't want more games. But try to think, what if Goodell and the league DO go to a longer season. What is the best way to make it work.

    That is what some of us are trying to brainstorm. Given that the league goes to more games, what is the best way to ensure player safety?

    Can people address that?
  12. JSn

    JSn Rookie

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    I actually like the idea of seeing back-up QB's playing in full-speed games.

    This would be a brilliant way to evaluate back-up's too. Imagine if Mike Wright or Ron Brace have to play two full-speed games and one of them excels? Suddenly, you see Vince lose a little leverage, or at least we can feel good about what happens as guys go off to other teams.

    Relatedly, it may make more of our solid back-up's tradable as there WILL BE good game film on their play.

    And if each team has to announce who's resting by say, Wednesday morning, we're at no more of a disadvantage than they are in game-planning.

    If there's a way to do it, seeing more legit Pats games would NOT make me sad in the least.

    If it's doable, I say let's do it.
  13. Pats726

    Pats726 Rookie

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    Do you think the fact that limiting player's appearances in a sport HAS NOT got any traction in ANY sport is by mere chance?? It's a DUMB idea!! I am sure at some point some great mind may have thought of it somewhere in some sport, but it obviously was cast aside and with good reason.

    I undesrtand it is a new strategy BUT as I have saaid it's a strategy THAT is in NO SPORT at all now and introducing that now might be conceptually interesting, but iy's a DUMB idea and one that changes the sport in many fundamental ways.
    Your analogy about baseball misses the whole point of what you are saying..."self imposed" doesn't really matter..when there is a RULE that overrides that. NO rule in baseball does even come CLOSE to what you are proposing. There ARE limiting factors of stamina, injury etc...BUT NO rules of use.
    But simply there are NO good reasons for this..it's good talk...but as Mo said, it doesn't fly at all!!
  14. Pats726

    Pats726 Rookie

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    Firstly...it's NOT doable...and I would like you to find one coach (how about one in the media, or an ex-player )that MIGHT think this is a good idea for the NFL...I frankly doubt that..but theer MAY be a few..but really it changes the nature of teh game, introduces a LARGE strategy that has nothing to do with the sport and pleases no one, player, fan, coach, media. I say throw this far into the garbage can.
  15. NewYorkJets1993

    NewYorkJets1993 Rookie

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    I think the system the NFL has in place now is good. I would be disappointed if they added more than 16 Regular Season games.
  16. JR4

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    tis tis tis .... just because it is not a written rule doesn't invalidate
    the analogy. Baseball mangers plan strategy all the time on which
    pitcher will be used over time. This is what HCs in football would have to
    start doing. It is not as far fetched as you make it out to be.


    Of course there is a good reason. In order to play more that 16 games
    in a regular season which is why we are having this discussion.
  17. Frezo

    Frezo Rookie

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    Who would replace the punter, kicker and long snapper? Forcing teams to have competent replacements for two games is a handicap. Other special teams only players would also pose a problem. Their replacements would be mostly starters and that would offset some of the safety considerations granted by giving them days off. I submit establishing a criteria that would make players eligible for the two day rule. One could be a total of actual numbers of minutes played per game in the previous season. Another could be starting player status on the offense and defense. I would also propose a rule that would allow a head coach to exempt ANY players, (2 or 3?), from the rule regardless of their status. For example if a starting NT only plays half of the plays per game, he should be able to endure an 18 game regular season without that much greater risk to injury. The coaches decision could be to exempt him from the rule. Some form of compensation should be made available to these players. Players that are taking a week off should be required to stay away from the stadium for one week to ensure proper rest and healing of nagging injuries because practice related injuries are not uncommon.
  18. Pats726

    Pats726 Rookie

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    Actually it DOES invalidate the analogy TOTALLY...you are comparing a situation where there is NO RULE to a proposed RULE in another sport.. HOW is that any close to the same??

    [/QUOTE]Of course there is a good reason. In order to play more that 16 games
    in a regular season which is why we are having this discussion.[/QUOTE] IF THAT is a good reason to ruin a sport..which is what is being done..THAT is even dumber than I thought..
  19. Snake Eyes

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    Why don't they just create a damn minor league and be done with it?

    Trying to turn pro-football into this mix 'n match scheme will destroy it.

    A minor league will
    - allow the NFL to make more money
    - let football starved fans watch something in the warm months
    - develop talent that fall through the cracks of the draft and will better ensure that the players coming in are NFL ready as opposed to college stars that are complete busts.
    - allow the league to test new ideas before using them in the main league
    - and since it would take place in the warm months the leagues could use college stadiums, which could lower ticket costs

    The NCAA is very limited in how much training their athletes can get because they're supposed to also be students, on the other hand a minor league can develop players full-time. This would mean better quality players would be in the NFL and the minor league would have better players than the college teams have.
  20. Aldogg

    Aldogg Rookie

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    I think this could be a marketing nightmare. Picture this scenario

    A Monday night game, New England vs Minnesota, superstars everywhere on the field, AP vs the Pats high power offense. Well, Minn's next three games are GB, Chicago and let's say Dallas, all three huge conference and division matchups. The Pats meanwhile are looking at the next three games of Indy, Pitt and Miami, two first place teams in their conference and a tough division rival. Seeing how this for both teams is an interconference match-up, where a win would be nice, but a loss is nowhere near as crushing as any of those other 6 games for both teams, so both teams sit their stars, so we have a Monday night marquee match-up with all the stars possibly sitting down because both teams have a hell stretch coming up which could decide their season, either in division or in conference getting a bye.

    Also, you need to do something for the special teams players. Would you really want to lose a game on a last second figgie because some dude off the street had to kick it instead of Ghost?
  21. JR4

    JR4 In the Starting Line-up PatsFans.com Supporter

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    How do you know it will "ruin" a sport?

    It just might make it more interesting. Consider the extra strategy that
    will be needed and the intrigue as to how it will be managed.
    Which teams do manage it best and which teams have the deeper roster of
    high quality players will give the sport an added dimension of excitement.

    Imagine a division race where one team is down by 3 games but has all of
    it's key players for the last month and the other division members still
    have several key players yet to sit out.

    Imagine a team who normally wouldn't have a chance against a top team
    getting to play a team who is sitting out it's start QB. It gives them
    real hope of pulling off an upset.

    ... and I'm sure there are other intriguing scenarios to consider.

    But ..... No ... we can't change it because it's never been done before.
    Guess what ... everything that was done for the first time had never
    been done before.
  22. Deus Irae

    Deus Irae PatsFans.com Retired Jersey Club PatsFans.com Supporter

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    They should just expand to 124 games, so that a team plays every other team 4 times. Also, they should adjust roster sizes, too. You only need 11 starters on offense and defense. Even when you add an entirely new 11 on special teams (13 with the 'foot' guys), that's only 35 players. So, let's give them 5 more players in case of injuries.


    40 player rosters
    124 game seasons.


    That'll really help with the owners' finances, give everyone plenty of games to watch, and the players can ask for bigger contracts.


    It's a win for everyone!
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2009
  23. JR4

    JR4 In the Starting Line-up PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Good thoughts. Easy to fix the Monday night situation. Starters can only be rested when there are more than two games scheduled to be played
    at the same time and date.

    Special teams needs to be addressed. That is a coaching decision on which
    players make the roster. Players that can play more than one position
    at a high level will become in demand.
    So I got a guy who can kick very well and is also a good TE.
    Guess what ... he makes the roster
  24. Snake Eyes

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    JR4,

    Here's an idea, try that set-up in the minor league and see how it works.
  25. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    What is the purpose of change? To make something better. And that is what the "Competition Committee" has forgotten and what Goodell doesn't get.

    Will adding 1, 2 or 4 games make the NFL better? No. I don't believe it will. If anything, it will dilute the league even more because there will be more injuries.

    As it stands right now, 8 teams play 17 games in a season and 2 teams could play as many as 20 games in a season. A 20 game season is just too long.

    Its already bad enough that the league has screwed with the schedules with its insistence on Thursday night games and Saturday games.

    Is a 20 game schedule going to draw more fans to Oakland, San Fran, St. Louis, or other franchises that continue to put a poor product on the field? No, Its not.

    If the NFL expands the season by 1,2, or 4 games, its going to create more problems and it will have a negative overall affect on the league.
  26. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Change for the sake of change is bad. Period. The purpose of change is to make things better. Neither you nor anyone else has put up ONE good reason to explain why increasing the number of games is a good thing. There have been PLENTY of reasons on how increasing the season would be detrimental to the league.

    Yes, there are disadvantages. You have to rest you QB and you have to decide when, and you will be second guessed as to which players you rest when. You could rest a WR and on the first play from scrimmage you lose two WR to injury.

    But there are advantages, too.

    what people are doing is coming up with reasons why NOT to go to more games. Okay, you don't want more games. But try to think, what if Goodell and the league DO go to a longer season. What is the best way to make it work.

    That is what some of us are trying to brainstorm. Given that the league goes to more games, what is the best way to ensure player safety?

    Can people address that?[/quote]

    There isn't a way to ensure player safety by increasing the number of games. There isn't a way to even mitigate it. What you and everyone else is failing to realize is that these guys put in HOURS upon HOURS of physical practice time between games. As it stands right now, at the end of the play-offs, they are all spent. One only had to see how many players from SB winning teams opt out of the Pro Bowl to see that.

    This isn't baseball where there is almost no physical contact between player's bodies. This isn't basketball or soccer where the game is primarily stamina based. And its not hockey where you have stamina and basically sprinting with a bit of hitting thrown in. Giving a player a game off isn't going to make them any "safer" because they are still going to be practicing.
  27. Pats726

    Pats726 Rookie

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    Firstly...you are changing to a great degree a sport that is more or less fine the way it is..CHANGING it deeply for what 2 games?? THAT is like throwing the baby out with the bath water...
    Making it interesting....I can think of zillions of things that would make a game interesting but they are unworkable..
    You can be Mr hotshot on this board with all the answers, but I would say if you are "serious" about this to peddle it to some who have experience with the NFL,,,ex-players, coaches, those in the media and see what reaction they have?? I doubt it will be as kind as many have been here.
    Not been done before...AND WHO would want it done?? It's CRAP! Time to get a link back to the planet
  28. moosekill

    moosekill Rookie

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    Ho hum, same "great" idea again. I think I'll wait till tomorrow and come up with another great idea.

    This time we'll expand to 19 games, and only let players play 16 games, what do you guys think. It would be really cool, we could make every team pick up 3 pop warner kids, only the best mind you, and then force them to play running back and wide receiver. Think of how fun it will be to watch those kids develop throughout the year.

    Now I understand no one has ever tried this before, but hell does that make it a bad idea? Of course not, come on lets think out of the box. Or perhaps we could set up a professional woman's league and force teams to use at least three of them every game. Think of the amazing marketing potential there.
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2009
  29. moosekill

    moosekill Rookie

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    Or we could expand rosters by 4 players or so, go to 18 regular season games, two preseason games, pay the players a bit more, and get this, let the players play every game they can.
  30. Aldogg

    Aldogg Rookie

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    #24 Jersey
    If you want to extend it to 18 reg with 2 preseason, why not add a second bye week? You still need 2 preseason games, as even though with the amount of OTAs, minicamps, training camp etc, you still need to see how players, rookies more importantly, handle their first live action, even if it is in preseason. And on top at that, take away the inactive list. Keep the PS, but all 53 guys on the roster dress.
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