NFL Adds a 17th Game to Regular Season Schedule
The NFL recently introduced a 17-game schedule that isn’t just for this season as the 17-game regular season will be a fixture for the upcoming seasons. The reason for this is obvious: more income for the television companies that broadcast the games, more income for the teams and more income for the stadiums where the additional home games take place.
Football fans are expected to be happy, but online perception seems lukewarm. A lot of people don’t have strong opinions one way or another, and it seems that everyone has an “okay, cool, keep going” attitude.
In addition, there are some aspects of this change that should have been considered beforehand. With the regular season now comprising 17 games, half of the league will have more home games than away games and vice versa. This can be seen as unfair by the organizations, the players and, most importantly, the fans. There are two viable solutions that could have been produced:
The first solution is to go one step further and extend the season to 18 games. This would bring the schedule down to an even number, problem solved! (And when we turn 17, why not 18?)
Another solution that might be a little interesting is to have the last game in a neutral place. We’re not quite out of the COVID pandemic yet, however, so London games seem out of the question for the coming season.
To move this idea further, think about all of the teams that have moved in the past 10 years. San Diego, Oakland, and St. Louis are just a few cities that come to mind. Historic venues could also be considered: the Alamodome and the Cotton Bowl. These places could potentially host neutral NFL games while also providing a sense of nostalgia.
This is what the NFL fails: to make new changes exciting. Adding a single game to the regular season schedule is like just giving you an extra marshmallow in your hot chocolate. Nothing too exciting. Had the NFL spiced things up for the final week of the season, there would likely be more reaction from NFL fans and players.
Even so, NFL viewers are likely excited to see an extra football weekend each season. The NFL could have done a lot more with this additional game, however, and it seems like there is still a lot left to be desired of this additional game.