Strange NFL planning quirk will make COs the second team in 30 years to deal with this rare situation

When the Commanders take to the field Sunday night, they’ll know their opponent very well and that’s because they’ll face the SAME TEAM they faced the last time they were on the field: the New York Giants.

Thanks to a bizarre scheduling quirk, Washington will face the same opponent in back-to-back games, which is only the second time in the past 30 years that this has happened. The Commanders played the Giants tied 20-20 in Week 13, had a bye in Week 14 and are now set to face the Giants again on Sunday night in Washington.

In the past three decades, that’s only happened once, and it happened last season with the Cleveland Browns. The Browns played one game in Week 12 against the Ravens, before getting a bye in Week 13, then they played Baltimore again in Week 14. As for the Ravens, they didn’t NOT faced the Browns in back-to-back games because they had to face the Steelers in Week 13, a game they lost 20-19.

Although the Browns lost the first meeting to the Ravens 16-10, getting a week off before playing them again ended up doing wonders as they won the second meeting 24-22.

The sample size isn’t large enough to determine if a team gets a huge advantage in those back-to-back games, but the NFL may need to rethink its scheduling philosophy if the team that comes out of a bye wins at new this year. Not only did the Browns win after their bye, but the bye looks to be a huge plus for the COs as while sitting at home last week the Giants were being beaten by the Eagles in a loss. from 48-22.

Since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970, there have only been a total of four instances where a team has faced the same team in consecutive games. Besides the 2021 Browns and the 2022 Commanders, this also happened in 1991 with the Seahawks and Chargers, but this situation was different as both teams had a bye between their two games. The Seahawks beat the Chargers 20-9 in their first meeting of Week 9, then after both teams earned a bye in Week 10, the Chargers picked up a 17-14 win in their meeting of week 11.

If the NFL is planning for a team to play the same opponent in back-to-back games, giving both teams a bye between games would seem like the fairest way to handle things. If the Commanders destroy the Giants on Sunday night, it wouldn’t be surprising if the league considered going that route since the team coming out of the exemption would be 2-0 when facing a team in back-to-back games.

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