On the same day, Commissioner Roger Goodell threw cold water on the idea of planting the six playoff teams regardless of whether a team has won its division, the Broncos coach Vic Fangio took another big step: get rid of the divisions completely.
"Since the league went to 32 teams, which was when the Texans arrived in 2002, my ideal suggestion, which has never been presented to anyone important, I don't think there should be divisions," Fangio told reporters. Wednesday. "I think you have 16 in each conference. Everyone should play each other once. That's 15 games. So, if you want a 16th game, you play with a natural rival from the other conference: the Jets and the Giants play every year , Eagles-Steelers, Texans-Cowboys, etc., play every year … (S) will avoid the problem that will happen this year in which an 8-8 team is likely to host a 12-4 team "You will get the best six teams in each conference. The divisions always float. There are some that are easy some years, some that have a lot of good teams, that change from one place to another every two years. I just think it would be a good way to avoid it. "
It is a simple, sensitive and equitable approach. Fifteen games per year against the other teams in each conference, and an interconference game.
"I don't think the divisions give you the best six every year," Fangio said. “Do you want the best six? Do it as they do in college. . . . (And) you play with everyone once. "
This would eliminate the local and local series that often makes the divisional game convincing, especially at the end of the season when a team plays for something and its division rival is not. In addition, reducing four interconference games per year to one would result in some teams rarely playing with other teams, especially if the interconference games would be linked annually to a natural rival.
The best approach would be to schedule the interconference game based on where the teams finished last season. The first place would play the first place, the second would play the second, and so on until the two worst teams in each conference meet. Even then, it would be just one interconference game per year.
Fangio was asked if he would like the media to boost his idea.
"Are you getting the clue?" He said, laughing. Do you like my idea . . . (L) et we will solve the following problem and play with everyone once. Let's put the six best teams there. "
It would definitely produce a much more pure and fair classification of the best teams in each conference, which the NFL should want. But it seems a change too dramatic to get some real traction.
In fact, if the owners do not even entertain themselves with the idea of sowing playoff teams based on the record without giving the champions of the lower division a home game, they will never eliminate the subcategories in each conference.
On the other hand, they did it once before. After the 1982 strike, which reduced the regular season from 16 to nine games, the NFL used a 16-team Super Bowl tournament, with eight of 14 teams in each conference qualification.
Even if nothing comes out of this (and surely nothing will come of that), Fangio's idea represents the kind of creative and proactive thinking that occurs very infrequently within the NFL, which tends to accept changes slowly, reluctantly and , often, only when necessary. Response to an embarrassing result.