What if the NFL went to a bowl format?

The mainstream media celebrated the end of the Bowl Championship Series after the Florida State Seminoles’ dramatic 34-31 victory over Auburn.

Dan Wetzel and Jeff Passan will finally get their wish in 2014 as college football will debut a new playoff system.

First off, Wetzel is an SEC apologist and Passan should return to his day job of reminding fans the Kansas City Royals still suck and Ryan Braun is a fraud.

It is the National Football League that needs a clue. For three weeks playoffs games are contested, giving teams who dominate the regular season a chance to miss out on a championship due to a freak occurrence or bad officiating call in a divisional playoff game.

Meanwhile, for a fortnight in venues from Florida to Hawaii fans feast on 35 games featuring the finest of collegiate football. I say it is overdue for the bowl system to come to the NFL.

We all see the college players celebrate like Christmas morning with all the swag they are given. Imagine how NFL players would react if they got jewelry and expensive cars along with a week in the January sun. It would be like 60 percent of the league getting the Pro Bowl experience!

Here is what it would look like if the NFL had a bowl system.


BCS Super Bowl – Denver Broncos vs. Seattle Seahawks

This is the game everyone wants to see, but in real-life the two top seeds need to win two home games to reach the big game. The risk of a team like the Colts or Panthers crashing pro football’s biggest party is just too great. It is not fair to Peyton Manning, and not fair to the Seahawks. For 16 weeks they proved they were the best teams, and the opinions of computers, writers and coaches simply do not lie.


Rose Bowl – Indianapolis Colts vs. San Francisco 49ers

Jim Harbaugh would blow a gasket with his team snubbed from the BCS Super Bowl, but there is a silver lining. Instead of spending a weekend in a rat-hole like Appleton, Wis. before playing the Packers in frigid conditions, the 49ers would get to play in Pasadena.

One reason for the Niners missing the BCS title game will be standing across the field. After playing in the Orange and Fiesta Bowls as a collegian, Andrew Luck finally gets his elusive Rose Bowl appearance, facing his former coach. Who says the bowl system lacks storylines!


Sugar Bowl – New England Patriots vs. New Orleans Saints

Why should the Saints spend the entire postseason on the road? The bowl system fixes this. Add visiting New Englanders invading Bourbon Street and a rematch of one of the best regular season games and you have a double win.


Orange Bowl – Cincinnati Bengals vs. Carolina Panthers

Orange Bowl officials hate this, and this game ensures a half-empty stadium. But the Orange Bowl is mandated to take the AFC North and NFC South Champions, ensuring its event remaining among the BCS bowls.

And instead of Marvin Lewis’ team again having its tail handed to it in another home wild card loss, the Bengals can fly to Miami, get eight players arrested in the days leading to game day, and then lose.


Fiesta Bowl – Kansas City Chiefs vs. Arizona Cardinals

Despite being a game better than the San Diego Chargers and a game and a half better than the Green Bay Packers, the Cardinals missed out on the NFL Playoffs. Still want to say the current system is fair? This way the Cards qualify for the BCS and get to play at home against a franchise that traditionally draws well and can’t wait to get out of the frozen Midwest.


AT&T Cotton Bowl – Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Green Bay Packers


The records in this one would make it awesome: 8-8 versus 8-7-1. Cotton Bowl officials do not care and fall all over themselves extending invitations to the Steelers and Packers. It will be an economic boon for the Dallas/Fort Worth area as they again gouge Green Bay and Pittsburgh fans for everything from hotels to rental cars to parking. The least they can do this time is ensure a seat for everyone and make sure fans get through the gates in under two hours.


Holiday Bowl – San Diego Chargers vs. Philadelphia Eagles

So the Chargers not only got a gift playoff berth, but a road playoff win. But what does it really mean? San Diego fans know all too well how their story always ends.

This way, the Bolts get an extra home game and San Diego law enforcement make a windfall arresting hundreds of unruly Eagles fans making the cross-country trek.


Capital One Bowl – Miami Dolphins vs. Chicago Bears

Bears fans make the migration to Central Florida much like they did back in the day when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were in the NFC Central. Maybe the Dolphins can ditch the rest of their coaching staff after another loss.


Chick-Fil-A Bowl – Baltimore Ravens vs. Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys even fell through the hometown Cotton Bowl, but remain a national brand with a larger fanbase in the southeast than the Atlanta Falcons. Their matchup with the Ravens fits perfectly with the traditional ACC/SEC flavor and Chick-Fil-A principles of the collegiate bowl clash.


Pinstripe Bowl – New York Jets vs. New York Giants

Despite both teams having lousy years, the college version of this game hit a home run this year inviting Notre Dame and Rutgers.

This strategy pays off here as well. After 40-plus years the Giants return to the Bronx to play the Jets, returning to the city after 30 years themselves. It will sell.


About Kurt Allen

Have written/blogged about sports since 2000, along with starting my popular Twitter feed in 2009. I also closely follow fantasy sports developments, along with events such as the NFL Draft.

Speak Your Mind