Murphy makes the case for 18-game season on NFLN

A little union displeasure won’t slow down the NFL’s P.R. campaign for an “enhanced” 18-game regular season.  (The 17-game season sounds dead on arrival.)

Packers President Mark Murphy appears tonight on NFL Network with Rich Eisen to go over many of the details we wrote about earlier in the day.

We’ve taken a look at the transcript, and Murphy seems like a good representative to make the league’s case.  But that doesn’t make his task any easier.

honestly, I think we see [the 18-game season] as possibly a way to reach an agreement with the
players,” Murphy said. “We’re working together with [the players] to grow the game and find ways to
generate additional revenue.”

Based on the union’s reaction Wednesday, it’s hard to believe that extra regular season games provides automatic common ground for the NFL and player’s union, much less enhances the odds for an agreement between the sides.

35 responses to “Murphy makes the case for 18-game season on NFLN

  1. A 17-week season would result in many more “losing” seasons for too many teams. They consider 8-8 a “winning” season (either you go 9-8 or better or you have a loser on your hands).

  2. God. I hope the NFL is pushing this stupid ass idea because the players hate it, so they can “concede” the point in negotiations, bury the asinine idea, and make the union happy.

  3. My idea for an enhanced season.
    1. Increase the playoff teams from 12 to 16. More teams in the playoffs equals more excitement.
    2. Eliminate the byes for teams 1 and 2. Will make those 2nd round playoff games more exciting.
    3. Schedule the first round of the playoffs over two weekends. This way you get an extra weekend of playoff football in for the networks with only 4 additional teams playing.
    4. Schedule two byes during the regular season. Gives those players a little more rest and recovery.
    5. Eliminate the last preseason game. No one plays in it anyways.
    Overall you get one additional week of playoff football, one additional week of regular season football and one less week of preseason. All this with only 4 teams playing an additional game.
    This advice is offered free of charge. Additional advice available for a small fee.

  4. As the NFL and the players union grapple over revenue gain and financial concerns in moving to an 18 game season, it’s a shame that paying fans don’t have a seat at the table. Guessing that the 2 additional games will take the place of 2 current pre-season games, I hope they will remember that fans are already paying full price for 10 home games a year. What is likely to happen for revenue gain is that ticket prices will increase, and more games will move away from traditional home venues.

  5. As a season ticket holder, I’d prefer they just quit charging us for those lame pre-season games (especially the dreaded game 4 -when no one you’ve heard of plays). But if they are going to charge us (and they are), then I’d prefer they count. So I’m all for an 18 game season if that is the only alternative to the present (unacceptable) setup.

  6. Ugh. 18 games. Really? So they’ll be playing in Green Bay into January or starting in Miami in mid-August? Keep it at 16.

  7. @deerpathdave
    16 team playoffs means that half of each conference makes the playoffs. And losing teams or .500 teams will be in. Like this year the Giants, 49ers would have made it under that system, and they only were 8-8. I like everything the way it is, so only the best make the playoffs. The race to make the playoffs is great when there are only 2 wild card spots. Plus, the lack of a first round bye would be bad for the players on the best teams.

  8. Deerpathdave
    You are crazy. Adding 4 more teams to playoffs devalues the regular season. You can easily look at the NBA and NHL to realize this. 12 is perfect.
    I do like the 2 bi weeks though. However, only if they go to 18 games.
    Think about it. Football until mid to lat February. It would be awesome!!

  9. they should go to the 81 game schedule. if its ok for basketball players, it should be ok for football players. whats the holdup?

  10. Mark Murphy took too many blows to the head. Hey Mark, go fire that idiot Thompson instead of worrying about NFL issues. Stay focused.
    To think Green Bay could have hired Holmgren as GM or President and didn’t.

  11. @deerpathDave
    you have some good ideas … Florio should graciously extend your subscription to the site for an additional year …

  12. Looks like Mark Murphy is starting to blossom like a flower. Hopefully this means he is starting to come out from under Ted Terrible Thompson’s control.

  13. IT’S A TERRIBLE IDEA!!! Two less games for the coaches to look at new players. Two less games for fundamental practice techniques. And two more weeks of poorly played football. More mediocrity in the NFL. There is already a 17 week season counting the bye week.
    More means less. This is all because the owners don’t want to drop the prices on preseason games. That is what should be going on!

  14. deerpathdave and all the people who subscribe to his asnine ideas are…stoopid.
    Two weeks for 1 round of playoffs?
    If no one will play in the 4th preseason game, what makes you think they’ll play in the 3rd?
    16 teams in the playoffs, what is this, the NHL?

  15. Money, money, money. These people make me sick. They want the athletes to endure more abuse, shorten their careers, and all but guarantee hell after retirement all to make a few extra bucks.
    The only thing wrong with the current system is that it could be making them money.
    If I was the players I’d tell them that the athletes are the reason they can make money in the first place. If they’re not happy with the millions they generate already, the athletes should just stop playing. Then we’ll see how long it takes them to change their mind…

  16. I agree that 16 teams out of 32 is a higher ratio than I would like to see. But I also don’t like the dynamics of the top four teams getting a first round bye. The combination of the bye AND home field advantage AND being the better team gives them so much of an advantage that the line for the game is normally 8-10 points. Many of these games are non-competitive. While we would see a team or two get into the playoffs that maybe don’t belong, and likely some less than competitive 1st round games, I think the second round games would be much better. When you add that to the additional financial advantage to the league of an extra weekend of playoff football, along with the hope of making the playoffs that would exist in more NFL cities for longer into the season, I believe that outweighs the negative aspect of the 4 additional teams getting in.

  17. The other key to the proposal of a 16 team playoff is that the games are played over two weekends. This means that EVERY team gets a bye (assuming they advance), which helps level the playing field and mitigating the advantage the top 4 teams get with the bye.

  18. @deerpathDave No Way 12 is the Magic Number and the Playoff system is just about perfect.
    Ok they already play 20 games (16 regular and 4 preseason) each year excluding the playoffs. I am all for a 18 game season take away 2 preseason games extend the rosters a bit add in another bye week and it will work out just fine. It will happen if the owners want it they own the teams and the league remember. Injuries are always a concern it will mean being more careful and make the 2nd and 3rd stringers more important. Its about money and yes the players want more and so do the owners and its does not take rocket science to figure out that having 2 preseason game turn into regular season games will make the league and players more money.

  19. @jkingmg. 18 regular season games minus two preseason does not do much to increase ticket revenue. They would get more television revenue, but I also think that weeks 17 and 18 would turn out to be almost irrelevant as many of the playoff races would already be decided. The league does not want to see half empty stadiums across most of the league for two weeks while we wait for the playoffs to start. Adding meaningful playoff football is the way to add excitement and revenue and extending the season without adding games allows more games to be televised. Given a choice of extending the regular season or extending the playoff season, I would go with the playoff season. The objective is to generate additional games people will want to watch to raise revenue.

  20. @buzzbinger. On the proposal to cancel week 4 of the preseason, I am suggesting that they give every leave the week’s 1-3 schedule as they are and give the teams the week off during week4. The teams pretty much do that anyway the games are worthless. The Week 3 games are usually good and would continue to be as the teams know they have the next week off prior to the regular season anyways. I can’t believe I am giving away this advice! 🙂

  21. @deerpathdave Let me guess your team is always right on the bubble and finishes in the top spot. I would think it would be a very foolish thing on the leagues part to expand the playoffs by letting half the league in We would more 8-8 and 7-9 teams make it in, an occasional 8-8 team in the playoffs is ok but16 teams would actual hurt the quality of the games in the playoffs . 12 is perfect. As for the extra games it will happen if the owners want it because they own the teams and the league its just a matter of when. Players come and go. I root for the team.

  22. @braindeaddave

    you give it away because no one would listen to you otherwise.

    I stand by my original acessment;
    3 games, teams wouldn’t play their starters in the 3rd game, just as they do now with 4 games.

  23. Some are suggesting to reduce the preseason from four games to three, basing the logic on week four being really bad (starters only play one series) and week three is very good (starters stay in till the third quarter.)
    The logic is flawed however. The reason starters play little in week four is because it’s the last game before the regular season, and not because it’s the fourth preseason game. Shorten the preseason to three games and you’ll simply end up with starters playing into the third quarter in game two, and barely playing at all in week three.

  24. I doubt they get rid of preseason games which are a huge money maker for the owners.
    They ought to start the season sooner!! They are foolish not to begin the season before Labor Day.
    The CFL begins games first week of July. Surely the NFL can begin their season in August. Preseason in July is not unreasonable.
    The Super Bowl should be in January not February.

  25. HC and Buzzbinger. The players and coaches all have made it clear that with the bumps and bruises that accumulate during a football season they want/need a week off prior to playing serious football. I think the league should acknowledge that and not schedule any games the week before the regular season starts. Then if you have two bye weeks and a guaranteed bye week in the post season, it would keep the players fresher for the whole season.

  26. Dave, buzzbinger here. For the last time, It is common KNOWLEDGE that the FINAL week of preseason is for evaulating the final cuts, therefore, NO STARTERS PLAY. Get it?

  27. I don’t see where’s Murphy’s going with this. Players don’t want longer seasons. What’s their incentive? The last time this was talked about the NFLPA was screaming that they wouldn’t play 18 games for 16 games worth of salary.

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