by ASA, Inc.
With the NFL Draft less than a month away, we take a look at the NFL's decision to add an extra regular season game beginning next year. With the addition of an extra regular season game this year (and no extra bye week), we are in for some big changes moving forward in 2021. One extra game may not seem like it would have a big impact, but the statistical metrics, record books, and the way we view players will all be different from ever before.
Milestones like 1,000 rushing or receiving yards will not mean as much since it would take less than 59 yards per game to now reach. Single season records will surely be in jeopardy and some of the game’s greatest players and seasons will not hold the place in history that they should.
Records that will broken:
Receiving yards: Calvin Johnson 1,964
Receiving TDs: Randy Moss 23
Rushing Yards: Eric Dickerson 2,105
Passing TDs: Peyton Manning 55
The validity of anyone that breaks these records will now be questioned. The league is only getting more talented by the year, which means that these records will eventually fall sooner than they should. There will be an asterisk in the history books to mark whether a historic season had 16 or 17 games in it. Players have a hard enough time making it through 16 games already, and a 17th feels like a money grab by the already rich NFL owners.
Alvin Kamara along with others have already voiced their displeasure with the additional game. The change in the season does hurt one position group more than others. Running Back. Maybe the hardest position to remain healthy, running backs will only be used more heavily and have an even shorter shelf life. Due to the 4 year rookie contacts that most players get out of college, many running backs are easy to replace by the time they reach their second deal. This is for good reason when looking at players like Christian McCaffrey, Saquon Barkley, and Ezekiel Elliott who all are on massive running back contracts yet struggled to return value to their teams this season. In a few years players should see the benefit of larger contacts and an increased salary cap, unfortunately for some current players this might be too late. Tainted records and player safety will be under close watch to see how much the 17-game season affects them.