What we feared about Pats/Jets is happening in the NFC, too!

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by brdmaverick, Dec 12, 2010.

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  1. brdmaverick

    brdmaverick In the Starting Line-Up

    #32 Jersey

    Going into the Patriots/Jets much-hyped matchup last week, a lot of talk surrounded about the fairness of one team getting the number 1 seed while the other would be stuck with no higher than the 5th seed EVEN IF the runner up had a record better than all other teams.

    It wouldn't have been so bad years ago when there were only three divisions in each conference, because then the best runner up still got to HOST to a playoff game.

    Now that the Pats have seized control of the AFC, and the Jets have been leap-frogged by Pittsburgh for the second best AFC record, this talk has quietted down. The scenario, however, is currently playing out in the NFC. The Saints, would have a full game lead for a bye IF only they weren't in the same division as the Falcons.

    Should something be done about this? Please recall that the NBA had a similar scenario. The Spurs and Mavs were the clear league superpowers, but would face each other in the conference SEMI finals instead of conference finals because one would be the #1 seed, and the runner up would be the #4 seed (seeds 2 and 3 guaranteed to other division winners). Looking to avoid this in the future, they changed the seeding so that the seeds #1-4 would still go to the three division winners and top runner up, but in order of record. In this scenario Dallas would have gotten the #2 seed, with the division winners of the other divisions gettings #3 & #4.

    Is there something similar that the NFL can do? Also, what to do about the NFC West? Should there be a qualifier like in NCAA that a team must have a 0.500 record to be bowl eligible (or in this case, playoff eligible)?

    What is VERY odd is that three 8-8 teams have made it to the playoffs since the NFL adopted the 8 division format. All three of those teams won their first playoff game (MIN over GB in 2004, STL over SEA in 2004, SD over IND in 2008).

  2. alamo

    alamo praedica numerum! PatsFans.com Supporter

    I like it this way, leave it. Same thing I said when it looked like the Pats might be losers.

    Right now you are focusing on the wildcard team getting jobbed, look at it from the POV of a team which wins a competitive division and gets jobbed by having its bye or home game taken away.

    MLB does it this way also. Which I realize for some is an argument for change... but it's clear that not everyone thinks reseeding by record is actually fairer.
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2010
  3. PatsFanSince74

    PatsFanSince74 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

    IMO, the solution is to let all Division winners into the Playoffs (otherwise, why have Divisions?) but do the seedings on the basis of records and tie-breakers. So, an 11--5 team that ends up second to a 13--3 team and gets a Wildcard berth gets to host a Playoff game before a 9--7/8--8 team that wins a weak division.
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2010
  4. TheGodInAGreyHoodie

    TheGodInAGreyHoodie Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

    Same opinion I had before the Pats-Jets game. Same opinion I had when the 12-4 Colts had to visit the 8-8 Chargers in 2008, while the 11-5 Patriots sat home. I like the system as is. I didn't like playoff teams getting better draft picks than non-playoff teams, but that has been fixed.
  5. Fencer

    Fencer Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

    #12 Jersey

    It is what it is.

    If you can't win your almost-must-win divisional games, don't cry about your seeding for absolutely-must-win playoff games.

    As noted above, poor-record teams sometimes do on great post-season runs.
  6. A_Ghost_In_The_Machine

    A_Ghost_In_The_Machine On the Roster

    I agree, keep it the way it is with the teams that make the playoffs (divisional winners plus 2 wild cards) but once the 6 teams from each conference have been selected then re-seed them based solely on record. It is a shame that teams like the Packers and Bucs could miss out on the playoffs despite having good records because the NFC West takes up one of the spots but I can't think of a solution.
  7. fnordcircle

    fnordcircle brady plz PatsFans.com Supporter

    Don't like it? Win your division.
  8. sbpatfan

    sbpatfan Banned

    The setup now is fine, and makes those divisional rivalry games more important / exciting (like last Monday).
  9. sarge

    sarge Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job


    I think this would be the best. You win your division, you are in the playoffs. But I agree with the seeding.

    If nothing changes, it would me messed up for the Saints to have to play there first two playoff games on the road against teams with lesser records
  10. MassPats38

    MassPats38 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

    #87 Jersey

    Howie Long addressed this a few weeks ago during a game, and I agree with him that the system should stay as is.

    Divisional records represent 6 games of the season. If the team is in a cake division, then it starts with 6 wins. If the winner of that division is compared to another division winner from a division loaded with quality teams, then it has a decided advantage as the division comes gift wrapped. Obviously, that is just as true with divisions loaded with lousy teams.

    It is very difficult to compare relative difficulty of schedules, and therefore difficult to compare the records of two teams from different divisions in terms of playoff seed position. Some teams earn 10-6, others stumble to it by .500 play outside the division. If the NFL enjoyed true parity, all teams would be .500. That isn't the case, which is why records may be higher or lower in certain divisions. The current playoff system adequately addresses the concern that you have to win your division to get in, otherwise there are no guarantees. Otherwise, best record gets best treatment and then see who is a fraud in the playoffs.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2010
  11. ctpatsfan77

    ctpatsfan77 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

    #3 Jersey

    Here's what I say: if you can't get over .500, you shouldn't be guaranteed a home game. In other words: I'd seed wild cards above any 8-8 teams or below, but that's about it.


    #12 Jersey

    You can probably safely say that no team has ever won a Super Bowl who had a mediocre division record..win the Division,enuff said :cool:
  13. brdmaverick

    brdmaverick In the Starting Line-Up

    #32 Jersey

    This doesn't solve all problems. There was still the possibility that the Pats and Jets end up 13-3 with 5-1 division records (above mediocre) and still get seeded lower than the Jaguars or Chiefs.
  14. brdmaverick

    brdmaverick In the Starting Line-Up

    #32 Jersey

    Oddly enough I think your argument actually strengthens the other side.

    Think about this, imagine the Rams get into the playoffs at 7-9. If that is the case, then the other three teams in the division will be 7-9 or worse. Therefore, the other teams in the division are crap. Most likely, at least 4 of the 7 wins will be against the division (which remember is all crap).

    So a team with a below 0.500 record makes it to the playoffs with its victories being against other crap teams. Doesn't sound like a playoff worthy team to me.

    Below is a list the division leading Rams have beaten to earn their 6-7 record.....

    vs. WAS 5-8
    vs. SEA 6-7
    vs. SD 7-6
    vs. CAR 1-12
    vs. DEN 3-10
    vs. ARI 4-9

    Oh, and they've been outscored by their opponents this season. They don't sound very playoff worthy to me.
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