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NFL owners approve expanded playoffs, with NBC & CBS to get extra WC games

The NFL is expected to pass a new playoff structure with ease on Tuesday. We break down what it means for the playoff television schedule.

A general view of the NFL Wild Card logo prior to the game between the Seattle Seahawks and Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field on January 5, 2020 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

UPDATE: NFL owners approved the change to the structure. Per NFL Network reporter Tom Pelissero, the Wild Card round will feature a triple-header on Saturday and a triple-header on Sunday.

NFL owners are set to hold a conference call on Tuesday where they are expected to vote on and approve an expansion of the NFL playoffs to feature 14 teams instead of 12. The recently approved collective bargaining agreement provides the owners the option of the expansion, and with the kind of money involved, nobody expects this to be voted down.

The current playoff structure features four division winners and two wild card teams, with the top two teams getting a bye through the Wild Card round. The proposed structure would feature a third wild card team in each conference, with only one team getting a bye through the Wild Card round.

The new structure would give us six games during Wild Card weekend rather than four. The league has negotiated deals with CBS and NBC to broadcast the additional wild card games and Amazon will stream them through 2022, according to SI’s Albert Breer. The league has to decide on the scheduling for the games. In the past, there had been some speculation of playing an extra game or two on Monday, but that creates a significant disadvantage for teams playing on a short week. One simple idea would be triple-headers on Saturday and Sunday, with games at 1 p.m., 4:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. ET.