to save yourself the trouble of reading my thoughts ive summarized what ive written below and quick thought reasoning's on why i feel they should implement an idea like mine , in the simplest of terms following the full post but would love to hear your feedback on what you think the NFL should do w/ the 18 game season proposal.
First let me thank you for taking time to come over and read this post. As we all know there are a lot of different areas surrounding a possible lockout on the season and one of those areas that players and the owners aren't agreeing on is the 18 game schedule. This is my personal take on some of the idea as a fan of what i would love to see as an 18 game schedule as well as a reasonable compromise for the players. Now as a disclaimer this is more so merely based on the schedule rather than what they should decide on roster size and other small things like the cut off of week 1 and how its affects player pay and such.
First lets go w/ the thought that they will indeed take 2 games away from preseason. Now where and how to add them back is the most important factor. One argument that has been said is they cant do the 18 w/out 2 bye weeks, another is the fact of the physical toll in general on their bodies even w/ out the two extra games. However while I agree at same time, thank you to teams that make it to the divisional round of the playoffs from wild card weekend and win and have to play straight through w/ no bye week, like this years Jets and Packers. Wont get into the preseason debate as I think 3 would be efficient as by the 3rd your using starters through the first half sometimes 3rd quarter of that game anyhow and w/ a roster increase you dont have to worry about the ones you didnt see right away to some degree in that 4th preseason game, but again this is off fact of the 2 being taken entirely.
Now Lets add 1 game to the regular season making the full season a total of 17 games. This will make it so teams will finish no less than 9-8 or 8-9 no more .500 records either you have a winning one or you have a losing season. The truest measure of winning or losing a season outright.
Second we change the official bye week which would alternate every year between the teams to week 8 and 9 period. Meaning all teams will have their bye week either the 8th or 9th week of season. Half of NFC half of AFC respectively each of those weeks. To help this as well the bye weeks will host the off country locations that Mr. Goodell is intent on bringing to the NFL. This will give teams time to adjust to the travel as well or the inconvenience of the game being outside the country as well as be something that the fans can look forward to since only half of teams are playing on each of those weeks. There would be no other Bye week during the regular season as w/ the expanded rosters and the bye weeks being dab smack in the middle of the season in this case it would be more reasonable as one reason some are ailing by seasons end is the fact of when their bye weeks happen. And thanks to the playoffs the argument can be had that one can play 8-9 games straight after a bye week.
Now lets do something that will shake up the football world entirely and mess w/ the playoffs. Now i have always loved the fact of football and its tough to get into playoffs its whats made it exciting and every game counted. W/ a 17 game schedule every game will still count but this season we saw something we should have never, a sub 500 team make it to the playoffs and over past few years teams that belong have been snubbed due to wild card weekend. Yes they won the division so i guess in that regard they belonged but its time to honor those other teams that get snubbed as well this will go into the INCENTIVE column for the players, as now two more teams can get in and they being rewarded for their trek through a rigorous 17 game season.
So now the field will be a field of 8 and that would be lead by the 4 division leaders and the next 4 best teams. The other thing we will do here is add that second bye week for all teams not just the #1 & 2 teams at top of conference. Plus as it shows this year both #1's were put out in the next round anyways even w/ a bye week and having home field advantage. This solves two things, 1. a second bye week for all teams still actively playing, before playoffs start which also means gives all teams a fair chance at the Superbowl and getting healed up to make that run and 2. adds the second "preseason" game back to the season, only its in playoffs since all 8 teams would play playoff weekend which would come to be formerly known as wild card weekend.
so summary of above of what to do w/ taking 2 preseason games and where to add them back;
1. 17 game schedule
2 bye week for all teams between week 8-9 w/ off country games held during these weeks
3 8 team playoff picture w/ bye week before playoffs start for all teams in playoffs