By enzian | Enzian Theater January 8, 2010 at 12:13AM
Heading into final selections for the Florida Film Festival over the next couple of weeks, the Wild Card opening round of the NFL Playoffs is not something that's going to demand my attention. But what did catch my eye is the fact that 3 of the 4 contests are exact repeats of games played the final week of the regular season. How bizarre is that? What is this, do-over week? Granted, the stakes are much higher for most of the teams this weekend (though the Eagles and Cowboys had plenty to play for with the division title and a first round bye on the line). But the Packers vs. the Cardinals, Jets vs. Bengals, and Dallas vs. Philly all played in week 17, while the Patriots and Ravens will be the only "fresh" game.
I've been watching football for decades and don't ever recall a similar situation. It got me thinking that maybe the NFL should shuffle the deck and instead of having teams play according to where they are seeded 3 - 6, if the same teams will end up playing two weeks in a row then just change it around so it works out differently. I believe they used to do that years ago to avoid two teams in the same division having to play each other for a 3rd time unless it was absolutely necessary and the AFC or NFC Championship game only. And by the way, the old bugaboo about how it's virtually impossible to beat a team 3 times in one season is a lie--the last 18 times this has occurred, the team winning the first two is 11 - 7 in the third game. So with Dallas at home against Philly, the odds are in the Cowboys favor (though we always prefer to watch Jerry Jones squirm in that owner's box). And should the Vikings have to play the Packers in the next round, I guess we'll just have to see...