The NFL is increasing its slate of regular-season games.
It’s unofficially official: The NFL is going to make its push for more regular-season games.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the league is planning to expand its regular-season schedule from 16 games to 17 games.
This will mark the first time the NFL has not had a 16-game regular-season schedule since 1978, which, as Schefter notes, is by far the longest stretch without a change in league history:
The NFL is expanding its regular season to 17 games
So what would happen if the league approves this expansion for the upcoming 2021 season?
ESPN’s Mike Clay provides the breakdown of what the extra game on every team’s schedule would look like:
The way was paved for this 17-game schedule when the players approved the new CBA last March. It will assumingly push back the league calendar by one week, with the Super Bowl most likely being played on Feb. 13, 2022. As NBC Sports’ Peter King speculates, that would likely mean no extra bye, with 17 games being played across 18 weekends — mostly because the NFL doesn’t want to start the season on Labor Day weekend and sacrifice ratings, nor does it want to add an extra bye week and prolong the season much further.
Only time will tell how this new 17-game season affects teams come playoff time. Whether it’s fatigue or having to avoid/prevent injuries for another game, tacking on that extra game may take its toll in unexpected (or outright expected) ways.
Stay tuned for more information on this story as it develops.