I think this is a compromise that still generates a big chunk of the benefit the owners see in an 18-game slate while alleviating the concerns of the players who would prefer 16.
NFL teams have a full 18-game schedule, but each individual player can play in at most 16 regular season games.
As far as I know, it would be unprecedented in any non-little-league sport for a healthy player who wants to play, and whose team wants him to play, to be forced to sit for non-punitive reasons. For that reason alone, this idea could probably never gain any traction. I'm aware of that. And yes, some games would be devalued. There would be lots of local news stories about 7-year-old Tom-Brady-idolizers whose parents paid a month's salary so he could watch Brady explain Polaroids to Brian Hoyer for three hours.
But I think there are some benefits here.
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