Tuesday, October 5, 2010

NFL 2010: Week 4 -- Thoughts on the 2010 Season so Far

After four games, one quarter of the 2010 season, spare the four teams with byes week four, only the Kansas City Chiefs, 3-0, are undefeated. Twenty two teams have two or more loses. Only five teams in the NFC have winning records. Is this not the dream of parity that the NFL has attempted to establish so firmly with the structure of its salary cap and schedule policies for the past two decades?

There is no truly dominant team so far this year. The Indianapolis Colts are 2-2. In the AFC, The Baltimore Ravens, Pittsburgh Steelers, Houston Texans, New York Jets and New England Patriots are all 3-1. That the Steelers are 3-1 while QB Ben Roethlisberger served his suspension, surely the future looks bright for Pittsburgh. The Ravens, Jets, and Patriots were all figured to be contenders. Houston also looked like they’d be at least in the Wild Card hunt, but what about Kansas City? Could anyone see this coming? While Oakland and Cleveland would not be seen as tough competition, they obliterated San Francisco. Buffalo is the only team that appears to have fallen off the cliff at 0-4, but how long was it last year before the Indianapolis suffered their first defeat only after the starters were rested when they clinched everything in sight?

The picture is vastly different in the AFC. The only success stories that seem plausible are Green Bay, New Orleans, and Atlanta all at 3-1. Did anyone think Chicago would join the club? However, they looked horrible in their first defeat against the New York Giants. Tampa Bay is 2-1. Given their victories were against Cleveland and Carolina and their loss to Pittsburgh, there’s not much to look at there.

In the NFC East and West, three teams are tied for first place in each division with .500, 2-2 records, Washington, Philadelphia, and New York in the East with Dallas at 1-2 having a 4th week bye. In the West, Arizona, Seattle, and St. Louis are 2-2. San Francisco, a huge favorite to win the division is 0-4.

Aside from the winless teams, Carolina, Detroit, and San Francisco, most teams are just a game away from a share of first place. There’s no clear indication of teams capable of breaking away from the pack, but right now, those teams would seem to be four teams in two divisions which makes it even tougher, Baltimore and Pittsburgh in the AFC North and New England and the New York Jets in the AFC East. All four of those teams have factors that would make that scenario a long shot.

For those who love real football is this the parity of parody or the parody of parity?

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