Report: Playoffs Very Well Could Expand By Two Teams As Early As 2015 Season

Like it or not, it looks like it’s only a matter of time before the NFL expands the number of teams that make the playoffs. In fact, it could probably happen as soon as 2015.

According to a Thursday report by Mark Maske of the Washington Post, a person “familiar with the deliberations” on playoff expansion has told him there’s currently a “lot of momentum” to make a move to 14 teams that will make the playoffs instead of 12.

“I think there’s a lot of momentum for it,” the source told Maske. “I don’t know for sure if the votes are there yet [among the owners] or not. But there is momentum. A lot of people seem in favor of it.”

Should the playoffs ultimately expand, Maske says that one additional team from each conference would make the playoffs and that instead of two teams having a first round bye, only the top seed in each conference would land the bye. This new format would result in six games during the first week of the playoffs instead of the four that we have been accustomed to during the Wild Card Round.

In addition to more games, having two additional teams make the playoffs could also result in one of the six first-round games being played on Monday night in addition to two on Saturday and three on Sunday. By doing this, league of course would benefit by creating more revenue.

Maske reports the owners will at the very least “consider” the playoff expansion a month from now at the NFL owners meetings in Orlando and it’s even possible it could be brought to vote at that time.

Had the new format been in place this past season, the Pittsburgh Steelers and Arizona Cardinals presumably would have made the playoffs. Being as the Denver Broncos would have had the bye week in the AFC, the Steelers presumably would have had to play the New England Patriots, who they had lost to during the regular season 55-31. That rematch of course would have taken place in Foxboro.

  • Callentown

    Dave, have you heard anything about the NFL moving to a playoff format that is not based on the current conference set-up, a la the ProBowl?

    Heard something at the end of last season suggesting teams with best record would make it in instead of sticking to division bests.

  • Rob H

    Great, let’s turn it into a situation with all the parity where you know your going to end up with sub 500 teams making it into the playoffs some years, all in the name of higher revenues. The last expansion made some sense, but this is too much, and would just dilute the product.

  • Shannon Stephenson

    To me I do not like the by week for the 2 top weeks so I would like to see 8 teams per conference.

  • Rob H

    I heard that somewhere myself, I was hoping it was somebody’s idea of a bad joke. Absolutely retarded idea, IMHO.

  • That’s too many….just like the NBA where the first round is just a waste of time for the most part. 7 is already a stretch but if they make it 8 it would be garbage….half the league!

  • Callentown

    When it comes to owners, it’s usually about the money.

  • joed32

    Actually a quarter of the league.

  • Last I checked 8 teams per conference is 16 total teams….and the last I checked there are 32 teams in the league which makes it half…

  • Patrick Reid

    Would love to just getting back to winning the division again year in year out. Then no worries.

  • Shannon Stephenson

    I agree that that is too many teams but I hate the fact that teams get a by. Maybe I am being too crazy about it. I also like seeing underdogs too.

  • joed32