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Should the NFL Bring Back the Playoff Bowl?

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The NY Times did an interesting feature over the weekend on the Playoff Bowl, a game the NFL used to conduct between division runners up who just missed the NFL Championship Game. A modern analogy would be a game between the Bears and the Jets last week. Would the league ever consider bringing the game back?

It actually might have a bit more merit than you would imagine. Consolation games can be entertaining. Nothing is on the line so teams are not afraid to open things up and take more chances. It would also give teams a chance to get an extra week of practice and get young players more experience. Again, there is nothing to lose so coaches could use it as an extra preseason game to evaluate players.

Despite the potential gains, I will join what I am sure will be a majority of you in saying it would be a bad idea to bring that game back. Football is an aggressive contact sport. The reason games like preseason and the Pro Bowl stink is that taking the emotion out of the game deprive it of its essence. What might be another opportunity for a team to evaluate guys on the depth chart would be brutal for fans. Would the Jets risk putting Mark Sanchez out there with discomfort in his shoulder and risk getting their $50 million investment hurt in a meaningless game?

A rematch of the Week 16 shootout with the Bears might sound fun on the surface, but I don't think anybody would really want to see a Mark Brunell against Caleb Hanie duel.