At the half way point in the season, there appear to be two playoff caliber teams in the NFC East, one in the North, and three in the South. The winner of the West gets in, no matter what that team’s record is.
So, it looks like there are going to be two pretty good teams that do not make the playoffs, maybe three if Chicago some how holds up, and all of these also rans are going to be very indignant at seeing an inferior West team hobble into the post season instead of them. Heck, there are liable to be three or four other teams with better records than the West Division champion. There might even be a team that finishes last in its division, but has a better record than the West winner.
It happens every year that some deserving team stays home and some undeserving team advances, but this year might just be an epic fail event of unjust enrichment. National scribatistos will call for realignment or a playoff scenario where teams are seeded by record, not by whether they were first in a dog shit division. This is a fair and sane suggestion, so it will of course not be adopted.
The 49ers got the short end of this stick only once, in 1991, when the team failed to make the playoffs with a 10-6 record. In 2008, New England went home with an 11-5 record, while the Chargers got in with an 8-8 record. No team has crawled in with a 7-9 record yet, but it could definitely happen this year.
This year will mark the fourth year in the past five that the NFC West has had a champion with less than ten wins. The lone exception was the 2007 Seahawks team that went a roaringly big 10-6. This is some serious peeuuuu, folks.
The AFC West has not been much better, but the Chargers have lent some dignity to it for the past few years by being an underachieving great team. IOW, psst (Norv Turner).
It’s common for Niner fans to grouse about the East Coast bias, but with the kind of meatballs being served out here on the left coast, perhaps it’s not an East Coast bias so much as just a plain old professional football versus peewee football bias. At least the NFC West is providing constant material for Leno and Letterman.
Speaking of Mike Singletary, did you hear that he …