BOSTON (CBS) – There seems to be some serious discussion among NFL owners to expand the playoffs to include another wildcard team in each conference, which would give the first-round bye to only the number one seed.
“Some may say it’s too much, you would have 14 playoff teams out of 32 in the NFL – but it’s still under that 50% threshhold which I think is important. I think this is happening. It’s only a matter of time,” Gresh said on Thursday.
Expanding the playoff teams to include seven teams per conference seems like a high number, but it wouldn’t seem that way if the NFL had a handful of new teams.
Just wait, because that’s coming too.
“There are two things that are going to happen within the next five years: playoff expansion, and as many as four new teams in the NFL. I think you could get one in Toronto, London, Mexico City and Los Angeles. I think there’s going to be a wave of expansion coming in the NFL over the next five years.”
The NFL is a $10 billion business, but in its current structure and format there’s this idea that the league is running out of ways to generate revenue.
In recent years there’s been the increase in ticket prices, Thursday Night Football, the RedZone channel and a host of other products offered to fans in a pie that can only be cut so many ways.
One way to increase the size of that pie is to expand.
From a business standpoint, Gresh thinks it makes all the business sense in the world. However, Zo feels like the on-field football product would suffer.
“There’s plenty of good quarterbacks for expansion, right?” said sarcastic producer Jim Louth.
Zo’s with Jim in that expanding the number of teams would just water down the product, even if the NFL stands to make more money.
“Give me your bottom twelve quarterbacks in the league and then just add four more to the mix, talk about diluting things,” said Zolak.
In addition to that, what about the fans?
Wildcard Weekend would in theory feature three games on Saturday and three games on Sunday – do people really have the time to spend watching 24 hours of television on the weekend?
Listen below for the full discussion: