The Schedule Juggle
August 10 2002
By Bryan Hersh of 49ers Paradise
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With re-alignment, the NFL did a very good thing this year. Teams travel lesser distances for away games, and because of the new scheduling format, teams will play each other more often, and on a predictable time-table. The improvements of re-alignment (with the playoff format being the only questionable aspect, as there are still only two wild card spots in each division) was a vast one over the old NFL. Itís just too bad the NFL didnít pay the same attention to the pre-season schedule.
Itís not just the ludicrous notion of the 49ers playing five pre-season games, and the last three games taking place over such a short span - but the scheduling blunders exist throughout the NFLís 32 teams.
Take the Dolphins for example. Miami plays in two preseason games within four days. Where is the sense in that? No answer? Maybe because there is no sense in that.
Yes pre-season games are fun for fans to watch, and a great way to warm up for the real deal, but letís face it. The chance of injury is high, the disruption to training camp practices is immense and quite frankly very few teams take the games seriously.
Now that NFL has juggled its regular season schedule for the better, itís time they take a look at the pre-season. Thereís no reason that the 32 teams in the league should have to endure another blunderous exhibition next summer.