math may have new look
by CK Rairden
Here is the first look inside the new
NFL math. First you take 15 games scheduled for week 2,
subtract them and then add those 15 games onto the schedule
during week 18.
Next you take the 4 wild card games scheduled for that
weekend and subtract them, leaving 4 cities, 4 teams and
4 teams fans out in the cold.
A quick synopsisyou now have only two rounds of
the playoffs before the Super Bowl, only 6 playoff games
before the Super Bowl, and only 8 teams in the playoffs.
What does this complicated equation equal?
The NFL with $50-60 million less in their collective
pockets. If the league doesnt provide the wild card
games, they will need to refund some cash to the networks.
And it gets worse.
A bunch of meaningless games will be played out in December
and January for a lot of teams. TV ratings will shrink,
stadiums will sit half empty at several venues and the
sports interest in those towns will turn tohows
Michael Jordan doing in his comeback attempt.
Each season, the NFL seems to get what it says that it
wantsparity. With 12 teams playing to get in the
playoffs the possibilities sometimes seem endless. The
last three to four weeks of each season, amateur mathematicians
begin crunching numbers trying to figure which team needs
to win, lose or tie that will assist their teams playoff
They follow schedules ahead through the final month of
the season, watching teams they usually dont watch.
They cheer for whichever team can help their teams
chances of a wild-card spot.
Thats the old NFL math.
If you purge 4 teams from the playoff tournament, you
reduce your playoff options by 25%. Thats huge!
Some NFL teams fans will know by early December
that they wont have a shot at this years playoff
Most of the time with the 12-team entries any team near
the .500 mark has a mathematical shot at the playoffs
down to the last weekend. That makes nearly every game
important to someone and gets the NFL exactly what it
wantslate season interest in a ton of games.
The NFL does realize this and owners such as the Chiefs
Lamar Hunt are pressing hard for the NFL to do whatever
it can to keep the playoffs at 12 teams and 10 games before
the Super Bowl.
The NFL is frantically searching for a formula and a
way to keep these games. Right now, the Super Bowl is
scheduled for January 27,2002 in New Orleans.
The popular scenarios
1) Move the super Bowl back a week (Feb.3, 2002) and keep
it in New Orleans.
No goAn auto convention has the next weekend booked
and cant move.
2) Move the Super Bowl back two weeks, (Feb.10, 2001)
leaving the dreaded two week gap between the AFC/NFC championship
games and the Super Bowl.
Highly unlikely. That week is the height of Mardi Gras.
3) Several different plans that have teams playing 2
games in one week, or 3 games in 8 days.
Again highly unlikely. Too much to ask of teams.
4) Move the Super Bowl to another city.
The best solution. Not sure if its feasible or
what kind of legal issues it would raise with the city
of New Orleans. They would have to be appeased in some
way. Something must be done or December and January will
be a long, boring month for many NFL cities, and the NFL
will be a lot lighter in the wallet.