Originally Posted by Stryker44
I never thought I would say it sucks to be NFC East champions, but that first place schedule for next season is looking like a curse right now where as with RGIII it would have been an opportunity.
I have been saying this since the Redskins loss.
Since 1999, only 47% of the division winners returned to the postseason the following year. That means if you win the division you are more likely to MISS the playoffs the following year than to make the playoffs.
This year was the most division winners to return to the playoffs since 1999 (6). Other than that, only once did more than 4 division winners return to the postseason since '99 (2003 division winners).
The system of the NFL creates parity. It makes it VERY difficult for almost EVERY division winner to return to the postseason. Between the tougher schedules, worst draft position, worse position on the waiver wire, teams focusing more on you, etc; it is difficult to be the division winner.
Dallas would have gone into the playoffs with all of those injuries and no Dez Bryant and probably no Miles Austin. All to lose and be put in a bad position for 2013.
It's possible to return to the postseason after winning the division, but at this point we don't have the personnel to do it and we need some breaks with better schedule and better draft position to make it work.