clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Division winners deserve a playoff spot, but not an automatic top 4 seed

Ignoring divisions the Colts are currently 3rd in the AFC and only a half game away from 2nd and a first round bye. Back in the real world with divisions the Colts are 5th in the AFC with no chance get a bye or host a first round playoff game (and next to zero chance of hosting any playoff game). The current #6 seed? 4th in the AFC. Both the Colts and Ravens have the same record and have more more AFC games than the Jets, but the Jets are favorites to host their first playoff game.

Taking away the guaranteed playoff spot for division winners either totally or conditionally (have to win x number of games) eliminates the point of divisions. Why even have them at all if the best team doesn't go to the playoffs. Divisions and the automatic playoff spot for the winner should be kept. Divisions build and sustain rivalries. Divisions have been a longstanding part of the NFL (and every major team sport). Getting rid of divisions it's the best way to solve this problem (though getting rid of them would allow each team to play it's entire conference and an extra inter-conference game).

The problem is the NFL rule that the top 4 seeds go to division winners. Every year there is at least one division that is just awful and one team stands above the rest just by being mediocre. If these teams can't beat up on their pathetic division mates for more wins than a wildcard team, why should they get homefield advantage? Are the Colts and Ravens less worthy of a top 4 seed just because they have the top 2 teams in the conference in their division? Does the Titans being very good, mean that somehow the Colts couldn't also be?