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How Will the Suspended Bills-Bengals Game Be Resolved?


This solution may appear more palatable if the sport meant little. However the game was actually quite vital for each teams, who’re safely within the playoffs but fighting for the No. 1 seed, which comes with a worthwhile playoff bye. Their finishes even have implications for other teams, notably Kansas City (13-3).

The Bills (12-3) can gain that No. 1 seed in the event that they win their final game of the yr on Sunday against the Latest England Patriots (12-3). The Bengals (11-4) may also get the slot with two wins, but they would want a Kansas City loss on the Las Vegas Raiders (6-10) on Saturday.

Cincinnati led the sport, 7-3, when it was halted and theoretically might have been awarded the victory based on that.

This was a very unappetizing scenario for several reasons. Barely an eighth of the sport was played, making the Bengals’ lead seem trivial. And given the harrowing night faced by the Bills particularly, awarding them a loss seems unduly cruel.

The N.F.L. had an ace in the outlet: There may be per week off within the playoff schedule.

The league could have pushed all of the playoff games back one week, leaving the weekend of Jan. 14-15, now set for the wild-card round, for the resumption of Bills-Bengals. The playoffs would have then began Jan. 21, the bye week would have been full of the conference championship games, and the Super Bowl could be played as scheduled on Feb. 12.

If that seems to go away a somewhat bare weekend, with just a component of 1 game, the league could have began the N.F.C. playoffs on time and pushed back only the A.F.C. games. The N.F.C. teams could then have been given a bye after either the wild-card or division rounds. Each conference championship games would have been played in what was the bye week, and the Super Bowl would still have been played on schedule.

There was precedent. After the 1982 football strike cost the league 57 days in the midst of the season, the N.F.L. added an additional week of standard season games and pushed the playoffs back per week, eliminating the week off before the Super Bowl.

In 2001, after per week of games was canceled due to Sept. 11 attacks, the league pushed the Super Bowl itself back per week. While that may very well be a scenario this yr, the complexity of rescheduling such a mammoth event makes that an unattractive option.

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