Asked in a conference call with Dolphins fans last night if the league would consider “each player playing 16 games but the team as a whole playing an 18-game season,” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell had a strange response: maybe.
“Your concept is one that has been discussed and will probably get further consideration,” said Goodell, according to Jeff Darlington of the Miami Herald.
I’m not sure if that’s just Goodell being polite, but that has to be one of the craziest concepts I’ve ever heard of. What is a guy like Peyton Manning — who has never missed a game in his 13-year career — going to say when you tell him he has to sit out two games? How are teams supposed to decide when to sit starters?
Sitting top players for out-of-conference games makes the most sense, but teams might think twice about doing so if there’s a chance their season finale will be irrelevant.
Coaches would despise this, as it would add a whole new dimension to their job descriptions. Suddenly, they’d have to consider hypotheticals. And that’s not their style.
Plus, how frustrating would it be if a team were to sit a starter twice in the first half of the year, only for that player to get hurt and miss time later in the season? What a waste.
It’s a very intriguing concept, but it’s also a very illogical one. I’m surprised Goodell ventured to give it life.