For many years, there have been arguments about shortening the NFL preseason so that players aren’t running a higher risk of being hurt in games that don’t count toward their overall record. Some believe that having fewer games in the preseason would make it better for everyone involved, and Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones believes the same thing. As a matter of fact, he believes he has a plan to fix the NFL and change up the entire dynamic of things.
As of now, NFL teams play four preseason games and a 16-game regular season. Two teams will have five preseason games each year due to being in the NFL Hall of Fame game. Over the years, a lot have petitioned to have the preseason shortened as injuries kept piling up before the regular season even began.
The argument for shortening the preseason has been made even stronger as teams are playing starters less and less in those games. A lot of people think that the majority of the preseason is pointless and that decisions on new talent and rookies can be made in a couple of games and training camp.
Jerry Jones has decided to bring up this conversation once again, and he feels as if he has the perfect solution.
Jerry Jones on @1053thefan is in favor of an 18-game regular season and only two preseason games. "It's probably better physically for players" to play 18 regular season games and only two preseason games. Believes it will "create a safer game for the players."— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) August 28, 2018
Yes, the owner of the Cowboys isn’t calling for fewer games each season but for the NFL to have a higher number of meaningful games. His argument is that the preseason needs to have two games knocked off of it and make those into regular season games for a grand total of 18.
As pointed out by CBS Sports, this doesn’t necessarily make for a “safer game” as the games are still being played. It is blatantly obvious that the more games that are played, the more wear-and-tear that will take place on a player’s body.
In reality, having two more regular season games would mean that starters are actually playing more and putting themselves at a higher risk for injury. With a longer preseason, the starters aren’t playing as much as more of the roster is being shuffled in and out of the line-ups.
A number of different ideas have been thrown around over the years, but none of them have ever stuck or been given much attention. Here are just a few of them:
- Additional bye week each season for a total of two per team
- Cutting the preseason down from four games to either two or three
- A week break before playoffs begin after the regular season
As often as this topic comes up, one would think that the NFL will eventually look more into changing how the preseason works. There are many players who suffer season-ending injuries in games that are exhibitions and it completely alters that year for the team. Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has his idea on how the league could be fixed, but his plan will likely fall into the pile with so many others.