Thursday, July 21, 2011
Commish for a day: Create minor league
By Matt Williamson
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Our divisional bloggers discuss one thing they’d change as commissioner for a day:
Many professional football leagues that were designed to compete with or complement the NFL have failed. But my suggestion is to create another league -- an entire minor league system as an extension of the NFL.
Much like in baseball, I want every NFL franchise to have a minor league squad. In essence, they would be the “Baby Patriots” or “Baby Rams”-- call them whatever you want, but these organizations would be run by the NFL squad.
It would be a fantastic place to cultivate young talent -- especially at quarterback. Players would get valuable game experience. It would be a breeding ground for young coaches and scouts as well.
Practice squads and game-day inactives would be a thing of the past, and the major league team could send players up and down as it wished. Example: The Giants are playing the Eagles this week and Brandon Jacobs is questionable with a sore knee. Maybe New York sends a backup safety down to the farm team for the week and calls up a running back. The system could also act as a rehabbing tool for players working back from injuries.
Now, I don’t claim to be a big business tycoon or know the intricacies of what setting up a minor league system would entail. Obviously, there would be quite a bit to it. But I see it as a tremendous way to keep rosters fresh and fluid, develop a lot of young talent and get a product in other cities around the country.
NFL teams could have their minor league squads in nearby cities that have college stadiums. And maybe the games could be played on Tuesday or Wednesday nights on ESPN2.
People will watch -- I have no doubt in my mind.