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OT: Hypothetical New Structure for the Super Bowl

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by KoolAid, Feb 7, 2012.

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  1. KoolAid

    KoolAid Rookie

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    I was daydreaming here and got to thinking, has anyone ever floated the idea of turning the SB in to a 3 game series? I understand the violence of the game and ensuing injuries create serious logistical / personnel issues, but I think for every problem there is a solution and the NFL is the only pro league w/o a series to determine who the Champs are.

    1. Expand rosters by 10 to compensate for injuries.
    2. Reduce 2 week bye before SB to 1 week
    3. AFC or NFC champion with the best record gets Game 1 as a home game
    4. Game 2 played at neutral city selected by current bidding process
    5. Game 3 (if necessary) either at same neutral site or second neutral site
    6. Move games to Saturday (just my personal preference). Change is hard, but we will learn to embrace Super "Saturday"
    7. Trash the Pro-bowl game and turn into honorary rosters
    8. Pre-season shortened by 1 or 2 games if necessary.

    Spreads the wealth to cities and stadiums that may never be able to host the big game. Doubles and maybe triples the number of seats available for real fans to experience a World Championship. And eliminates the feeling that 1 bad play, 1 bad penalty, 1 bad game can be the difference.

    I personally would rather see this than a longer regular season. Thoughts?
  2. voluntarysaftey

    voluntarysaftey Rookie

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    3 week playoff series is too long and really screws the offseason of the teams in it.
    It would also take away from the mystique of the single game superbowl.
    The only thing a 3 game series does is improve the chances that the better team wins. Although unless you have 3 game series thru-out the playoffs then the better team(s) may have already lost prior to the superbowl.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2012
  3. BradfordPatsFan

    BradfordPatsFan Rookie

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    Using the anti-college playoff argument, how would you expect people to afford travel and tickets for two (or three) potential championship games?
  4. KoolAid

    KoolAid Rookie

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    They are talking about season expansion anyway. Lose the pro-bowl, cut a pre-season game and the season really isn't longer. I want more NFL, personally.

    As far as travel and costs to fans, If the ticket prices are dropped it opens it up to more fans who are priced out every year. A home game would give local fans a better opportunity at experiencing a SB game. I think the TV networks would be on board, because there is more than 1 game to reap the benefit of. 1 ticket doesn't admit you to the whole series. 93.2 million people watched the SB in 2010 only 60 to 80,000 seats in a stadium. I am sure there is a good % of true fans that can find a way. Shoot! There were seats in the 100 section this year going for $10,000+.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2012
  5. Raymond

    Raymond Rookie

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    If Welker made that catch and the Pat's won, would you still want a three game series?

    I think this idea is insane.:bricks:
  6. PatsFanSince74

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    There was a whole thread on a similar topic a while ago. I confess that it is an intriguing thought to alter the post season to remove the randomness and "unfairness" that seem to creep in. But it is precisely that randomness and unfairness that is part of the attraction and drama of the NFL's post season and that has sent its ratings soaring.

    That said, I think these are the problems in tinkering with the post season as it now exists:

    1) For better or worse, the playoff process as it now exists is designed to build maximum viewer intensity around a limited number of events. "Win or Die" is clearly limited in many ways, but makes for great TV and builds ratings far more effectively than a "best of..." or "round robin" format, which would drag on and on.

    2) The NFL works within a set of "givens." One is a two week preseason and a 17 week regular season with 16 games played by each team. Small and medium market teams depend on that number of games to make their budgets and many have tried to fight for a longer seasons, not a shorter one. Shortening the season is a non-starter.

    2a) While the season has to be 18 games long (16 + 2) to keep all the owners on board, the post season realistically can't require that any team play more than a total of 20 regular and post-season games. Not only would that represent an increased and brutal set of demands on the "surviving" players, but it would alter the off season dramatically for the successful teams (just ask Bill Belichick about that; he has spoken often about it).

    3) Another "given" is a compacted, pressurized and intense four weekend playoff process that engages viewers around a series of "one or done" games, part of the attraction of which for a mass audience is that the better team doesn't always emerge victorious. The extra week between the Conference and SB Championship games is designed to build suspense and interest.

    4) Another given is that 12 teams make the Playoffs. Remember that the NFL is trying to keep a large and diverse group of owners with different and at times conflicting economics and agendas "on board."

    5) Another and clearly obvious given is that teams need six or seven days between games to be ready to play these kind of games where the loser goes home.

    6) The NFL has succeeded in building interest in its Playoffs (last Sunday's game was the most highly watched show in the history of American TV) by "leaving 'em begging for more" and exiting stage left ten days or so before Pitchers and Catchers report for the beginning of another interminable baseball season and then building interest in "Draft Days," which it has turned into another "event."

    7) The NFL has left baseball and basketball with their drawn out postseasons in its rear view mirror in terms of ratings and viewer interest (I don't even include "Ice" hockey games that drag on into June). "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2012
  7. PatriotSeven

    PatriotSeven Rookie

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    Amazing how no one agrees with me the playoffs structure sucks;)

    We need round-robin at the divisional round.

    Although the new Page playoff system, which is growing in popularity, might work good with the NFL too and that's gaining popularity. This allows both the sucky underdogs and at least 1 of the top seeds to advance as far as possible before being eliminated.

    So would simple double elimination. First to lose twice is out. This would eliminate redundancy and having some teams possibly facing each other 4 times in a season including the Championship game. Round-robin would create that possibility which might be a bit too much for the NFL.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2012
  8. blackglass3

    blackglass3 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I agree, and made a similar thread back in 2008 and a similar post a few weeks ago. I think seeing the adjustments and gameplanning for a 3 game series would be interesting...maybe the Pats try a run heavy game in the first one and see how that works out, then plan accordingly.
  9. KoolAid

    KoolAid Rookie

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    I hear ya on pretty much all of your points, but I think the playoff structure would remain intact, you keep the 1 and done intrigue there and only add 1 or 2 games to the Super Bowl, which has become so inaccessible for the average fan that it makes me sick. I don't see any other way to do that (make it more accessible).

    I also think this scenario gives markets a shot at hosting a big game that they never would, like say Cleveland. Competition would grow towards being the team with the best record and infuse money into that franchise and city.

    A round robin would be intriguing as well.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2012
  10. KoolAid

    KoolAid Rookie

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    Probably not! But unfortunately that did not happen. Honestly, it never even occurred to me until now, but I like the idea of improving the postseason. I don't think it would drive any fans away at all.
  11. bradybeliever

    bradybeliever Rookie

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    Why not a 50 week season with 2 weeks off for the players to rest up for the following season?
  12. reflexblue

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    Did you run this past Goodhell? What did he say?
  13. PatsFan24

    PatsFan24 Rookie

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    No. No no no. Terrible idea. The setup is fine the way it is.
  14. PatsFanSince74

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    You ducked this question in your earlier thread, so maybe you'll answer it here.

    Without a lot of verbiage, how would your proposal work. I'll make it simple.

    Six teams made the playoffs this year in the AFC, seeded as follows: NEP, BAL, HOU, DEN, PIT, CIN.

    Six teams made the playoffs in the NFC, seeded as follows: GBP, SF, NOS, NYG, ATL, DET.

    The regular season ended on Sunday, January 1st.

    The Super Bowl was played on Sunday, February 5th.

    The NFL has a Bye week between the CCG's and the Super Bowl in order to build fan intensity for the Super Bowl, a strategy that seems to be working since the SB this year was the most viewed game in playoff history.

    The CBA requires that no team play more than 20 Regular Season and Playoff Games.

    The Owners want a minimum of a 16 game Regular Season with two preseason games for every team to meet the revenue needs of small and mid market teams.

    The Owners and fans want two wild card teams in addition to the four division winners to increase viewer and fan interest as the season comes to a close.

    Competitive games at the highest level in the NFL require a six or seven day period between games.

    So, operating within the real constraints of team economics and the CBA and what has proven in the minds of most folks to be successful, how would you have changed the playoffs this year? Specifically. Not in theory.

    In as few words as possible:

    Who would have played whom on the weekend of January 7/8?

    Who would have played whom on the weekend of January 14/15, based on the outcomes of the prior week?

    Who would have played whom on January 22 to determine the SB competitors, based on the prior outcomes.

    If you cannot work within the CBA or team constraints, which ones would you change, specifically?

    Thanks. I am sincerely open to your suggestion, but it has to be realistic.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2012
  15. KontradictioN

    KontradictioN Do you even lift? PatsFans.com Supporter

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    So, essentially, because we lost the Super Bowl, we should want it expanded to a three game series? What happens if we lose that? A five game series? The best thing about the NFL playoffs is that each game is essentially sudden death. It's one of the main reasons why the NFL playoffs are the highest rated out of every American sport. Why change that now?
  16. Palm Beach Pats Fan

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    Most watched television show ever...


    How is it broken?
  17. jcdavey

    jcdavey Rookie

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    do it like soccer and have a 2 game cumulative score bowl lol
  18. Dufflebagz

    Dufflebagz Rookie

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    I stopped reading there. It's a terrible idea.
  19. PatriotSeven

    PatriotSeven Rookie

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    I didn't dodge it. I addressed it. And it's still there, although you didn't ask all of these questions. Obviously if you wanted it implemented this year, changes to the CBA might be necessary. If you wanted to keep everything exactly as is, it limits what you can do. As far as the actual breakdown of it, there's more than one way to skin a cat but I'm only going to do it for one conference because the other would work the same way. First you have to decide which playoff format to use and if you wanted to keep the Wildcard Week or not.

    Example 1. Round robin.


    Round Robin in theory, is the most fair of all playoffs system because, not only does it provide all teams with the same exact level of competition, same number of games, but also tends to produce the best teams, irrelevant of seeding or regular season records. Once you make Round Robin, your regular season record and seed is meaningless, except for home games.

    - if you keep the wildcard round as is, applying round robin to the Divisional round only adds 2 extra weeks and 2 extra games, but you still have the possibility of two Divisional Champions being knocked out. The 2 wild cards teams could replace the 2 Divisional Champions in the first week. The best team or teams might still get knocked out during the Wild Card round.
    -you could cut 2 preseason games, keep the Wildcard week, and keep the Super Bowl week if you wanted to and not have to extend the season. Just push all the dates back 2 weeks begining week 1 of the regular season.

    So to break it down, say you keep the wildcard week, and you keep the preseason the same and same results from this year:

    Jan 15th(higher seed gets home game):
    Packers vs Giants
    49ers vs Saints

    Jan 22nd:
    Packers vs Saints(teams that played away gets home game)
    49ers vs Giants

    Jan 29th:
    Packers vs 49ers(higher seed gets home game)
    Giants vs Saints

    Seeding will only be used to decide home games and everyone still gets at least 1 home game. Higher seeds will end up with one additional home game. Tally them up. Best 2 teams with winning records move on to the NFC Championship game. Tiebreakers could be employed to break any ties.

    Feb 5th:
    NFC Championship(neutral ground or highest seed)
    Winner 1 vs Winner 2 of Round Robin

    FEb 12th:
    Media week

    Feb 19th:
    Super Bowl
    NFC Champion vs AFC Champion


    Of course you could also move the bye week before the Championship games. I'm also willing to bet you could draw bigger ticket sales and raise the popularity and meaning of Championship games to where you could hold them on neutral ground. You risk being unable to play a player that suffered a concussion in the Super Bowl though if you move the bye week back.

    I also believe any increase in viewership is also a result of football becoming more popular. Rate of growth has actually stagnated. There's no reason to believe an increase in championship caliber games would not increase popularity and viewer ratings in the playoffs, but more importantly, carry through to the Championship games and Super Bowl.

    In addition in the event you have a strong underdog, from a smaller market, it would very much help this team become more popular by playing 3-4 playoff games. People would become more familiar with the players and personality of the team especially if they were to make the Championship or Super Bowl. There would be less incentives for the NFL to tinker with the refereeing to favor popular market teams that draws more viewers, because even smaller market teams would gain popularity during the playoffs and likely carry through to the regular season. Super Bowls and Championship games that include unkown teams would be far more exciting.

    The result would be, theoretically, the best teams in the Championship games and Super Bowl, regardless of regular season seedings or winning records. A 9-7 team that would make it through this, would never be seen as a "weak" team if they ever made the Super Bowl. You would rarely have a team make the Super Bowl by being "lucky". It would be seen as one of the best teams. This turns an underdog into an equal competitor by the time that underdog makes the Super Bowl. Likewise a #1 seed due to an easy schedule would not survive as easily. Super Bowls would always have microscopical point spreads. No media selling required. The teams themselves and system sells the teams by winning.



    The Page playoffs system.

    Page playoff system guarantees one of the top seeds to make it to the NFC Championship game. It also assures loser of the top seeds make it to week 3 and both play a minimum of 2 playoff games. The Page playoff system is a mix of single and double elimination and can actually be adjusted a number of different ways but you can actually use it with only adding one additional week and no adjustments to the pre-season games. If you take media week away, no additional weeks are added.

    It's very interesting because it really raises the competition for the #1 and #2 seeds in the regular season. It also benefits the winner of the top seed game with an additional bye week. Teams would no longer benefit from purposely trying to finish with a lower seed to avoid a strong opponent.

    Example 2. Page playoffs(top seeds get home games):

    Round 1.
    Week 1, Jan 8th, Wild Card round
    Giants vs Atlanta
    Lions vs Saints

    Packers & 49ers have byes.

    Round 2.
    Week 2, Jan 14th(Wild Card round survivors face off)
    Saints vs Giants

    Week 2, Jan 15th(#1 and #2 seeds face-off)
    Packers vs 49ers
    Winner automatically advances to NFC Championship game, gets additional bye week. Loser still alive and plays winner of Saints vs Giants.

    Round 3.
    Week 3, Jan 22nd
    Winner of Jan 14th vs Loser of Jan 15th
    Winner advances to NFC Championship game.

    Jan 29th, NFC Championship
    Winner of seed face off vs winner of Round 3

    Jan 5th
    Bye Week

    Feb 12th
    Super Bowl.

    This system is flexible. Giants would be forced to face the Saints this year before ever getting a shot at the 49ers or Packers. Oh-oh :D You can adjust it a number of different ways. It creates an incredible amount of excitement though. You have 4 HUGE games instead of 1 before you ever get to the Super Bowl. The competition at the end of the regular season would also be insane for the top 2 seeds and for the Divisional Champion spot because of home playoff game advantage.

    Seeding alternative:
    You could also allow the team that didn't get a home game up to that point to get one at either round 2 or round 3. If they both had a home game, higher seed gets the home game. For example if the Giants beat the Saints at home in Round 2, and the Packers lose to the 49ers at home, the Giants would get the home game in Round 3 because they wouldn't have had one up until that point. Who wouldn't consider that fair? If the Giants somehow got past the Saints in New Orleans, they would have deserved to face a losing Packers team at home this year. However, something tells me the Giants would have never made it out of this system. I can't quite put my finger on why I feel that way....;)
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2012
  20. Palm Beach Pats Fan

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