Has the Power Shifted to the NFC?
In short, not yet. Despite the struggles of the AFC's purported power triumvirate--New England, Indianapolis, and Jacksonville--it is far too early to authoritatively say that the NFC is the new power conference in the NFL. Three weeks is not a long enough sample to accurately say or predict anything in the NFL. Do you want proof? The San Francisco 49ers are currently 2-1 and Kerry Collins is undefeated as a starter. Those two things haven't happened simultaneously since 1994, when the Niners won the Super Bowl and Collins led Penn State to the Rose Bowl.
The media, as usual, are quick to point out any trends that look to be developing, for no other reason than each guy wants to be the first one to call something. Which is why Aaron Rodgers is on pace to break all 8,712 of Brett Favre's records and Trent Edwards will be the greatest thing to come out of Stanford since John Elway. These comparisons, like those dictating the NFC's return to glory, are largely unfounded and, although they may be true in the long run, have no business being made while it's still September.
Personally, I firmly believe that, IN THE LONG RUN, the NFC will produce the more talented playoff teams this year and, in all likelihood, the Super Bowl champion. The Cowboys look unstoppable. The Eagles, Giants and Packers look very competitive, and even the Saints and Panthers are formidable. All I'm trying to say is that as of right now, on September 22, it is far too early to make such a resonant claim. After the NFC won 13 straight, the AFC has won 8 of the last 11 Super Bowls. Power can shift in 11 years. It can't shift in 3 weeks.
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