I had some email about my proposed seeded tournament to decide the playoff teams, thus eliminating the "classic" AFC-NFC matchup.
Lets look at a scenario. Supposing the top 12 - regardless of their division spot - made the playoffs:
San Diego 13-3
Green Bay 11-5
New England 10-6
The top 4 teams get the byes, as they do today. But the tournament is setup so there's a clear advantage to finishing higher up, something like the graphic above.
Who would rest their starters when this is at stake?
That's my story, and I'm sticking to it!
[editor's note: we skipped a round. Oops! There would be one additional game before the superbowl. Sorry...]