17 week Miami Dolphins schedule coming soon but how will it work?
The NFL season currently runs for 17 weeks once the pre-season games conclude but soon, the Miami Dolphins and the NFL may see 18 weeks of football.
NFL owners will vote soon on expanding the league year by one extra game and eventually, they are expected to expand the regular season to 18 games. With those extra games will come a decrease in pre-season games.
The NFL can add a week under the current CBA provided they drop a week of pre-season. ProFootballTalk.com had a few things to say regarding some owner’s opinions on the matter.
Personally, I think we need at least three pre-season games. We learned this year that without games, the players were not afforded a good opportunity to make an impression in game situations. Furthermore, we saw an increase in injuries due to the rule changes regarding training camp. Camps will eventually go back to how they were in 2019 provided the owners don’t vote to reduce contact even more. Not for Covid but for safety.
The big question I have about the 17-week schedule is who will that 17th team be? The balance is pretty simple right now. Two games each against division opponents, four games against one NFC division and another four against an AFC division, and the one game against a team from each other AFC division or NFC if it is an NFL club. Now, another game will need to be added but where will that come from?
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The next question is where will that game be played? Obviously, 16 games are evenly split with 8 home and 8 away. The best option is to have that 17th game played on a neutral site. For example, the NFL International Series would be a perfect option for each team to play one game, out of the country without giving up a home game. The issue here is that the league is not currently playing 16 games out of the country and it may not be a good idea to increase the amount of those games.
Personally, I would like to see the NFL rotate some of those games within the U.S. at a neutral site. It would increase the fanbase, especially if teams played regularly in a city where a pro team may not be located.
There is no simple answer and knowing the operations of the NFL, some teams in a division will get nine home games while another in the division will get eight. Is it that much of a shift in balance? Probably not enough to make the NFL consider alternatives.